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(52:35; Glorious Wolf)
On 2017’s debut ‘Aquarius’, multi-instrumentalist Ruud Dielen did everything himself, and this is pretty much the same this time around although he did bring in guests to help out here , with the exception being singer Oscar Anema. Five of the songs contain vocals, and it must be said right from the beginning that this is the major stumbling block of the album. While he does manage to get away with it on “The Game”, for the most part his voice just doesn’t suit this type of music. That is a real shame as this neo-prog crossover Floydian album has a great deal going for it aside from that. Dielen is a fine guitarist, and it is this that drives the music, combined with layered keyboards. For the most part this comes across as quite Floydian indeed, although there are times when there is more than a hint of blues which is nice and refreshing. The atmospheric keyboards and Mellotron set the scene nicely, with piano being a nice analogue touch, but it is the guitar which is the voice, although the Floydian bassline steal in ‘Constellation” is so obvious it made me smile and was obviously put in for exactly that reaction. But, that voice does drag the album down, as Anema is not suited to this style of music, and Dielen is needs to find a new singer, go instrumental, or choose a different musical direction which is a shame as apart from that this is a fine album indeed.
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