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(46:03; Elspeth Meadow)
So, after not hearing any new music from multi-instrumentalist Ken Senior in more than 20 years, an envelope arrived in New Zealand all the way from deepest Yorkshire containing not one but two CDs. The first of these was by Evolve, a project looking back on his neo-prog days when he was recording as Evolver, while the other is a brand-new project, Elspeth Meadow. This sees Ken dispense with the services of a drummer, but I can see why he has released this under a different name as this is totally different to the rest of his material I have come across. He himself describes it as “Light Progressive” and that is actually a very good term, although there are also times when it crosses the boundary into New Age and happily camps there for a while. A combination of songs and instrumentals, Ken again provides all the music and vocals, but here in a far more relaxed manner, so laid-back at times that he is almost horizontal. Lots of gently strummed acoustic guitars, along with softly sung vocals and Hackett-esque electric lead lines takes one back much further in time than the days of heady neo-prog and firmly into the early Seventies. This is not music which is supposed to be dissected and pored over, but rather just put it on the player and relax into it. I’ve discovered it is one of those albums that works equally well as background or being directly listened to, but however you want to ingest it, this is yet another really interesting album from Ken. Yes, it feels and sounds like an independent release, and in many ways has far more in common with the 90’s than the current day, but that isn’t always a bad thing. This could never be confused with being a big budget over the top release, but instead is by someone who does this simply because he loves it.
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