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(45:07, The Man From RavCon)
TRACK LIST: 1. Colossus 7:32 2. Satellite Flight 3:33 3. Max the Cat 4:27 4. Code Red 3:16 5. Promised Land 5:55 6. The Garden 5:52 7. A Peaceful Transition 3:49 8. Another World 7:06 9. Pole to Pole 3:37 LINEUP Mike Brown - all instruments with: Jeff Eacho - flute Larry Smith - guitars
Prolusion. US project THE MAN FROM RAVCON is the creative vehicle of Mike Brown, a veteran band musician that decided to create and release his own music in what appears to be a purebred studio venture almost a decade ago. Since then 9 albums have seen the light of day, and "Another World" is the most recent of these.
Analysis. Those who seek out The Man From RavCon expecting to find progressive rock, be it underground or not, will most likely walk away ever so slightly disappointed. My impression is that Brown doesn't care all that much about what if any genre conventions he falls within or not, as I experience the music he creates, on this album at least, to be much more about mood and atmosphere than anything else. As such, most of the compositions here are rather different in their core foundations, ranging from electronic music not light-years away from Tangerine Dream and perhaps even Kraftwerk, to gentler psychedelic tinted excursions and the occasional dip into soft rock and classic rock Americana style. These are the core foundations of course, it is what Brown builds upon it and how he goes about is that is most interesting of course. The songs here mainly develop in one of two manners. They will either gradually build up an increasing amount of layers, to reach a majestic or dramatic conclusion, or they will build, fall back and then build up again. Wandering acoustic guitars and firm guitar riffs is as much a weapon of choice as synthesizers, cosmic sounds and Mellotron, the latter used for those mysterious sounds as well as, unless I'm much mistaken, some fine, nervous orchestral backdrops that appears here and there. A common, recurring feature in most tracks is a psychedelic tinged guitar solo, and alongside the futuristic and at times cosmic sounds is something of a core feature throughput this production. And I suspect the latter aspects here is the bread and butter of this album too. Conjuring associations towards other places, other planets and other planes of existence. Genre conventions strikes me as much less important in this case than the ability of these soundscapes to inspire the mind to drift to somewhere else. As standalone pieces of music, created art, this album doesn't make me look through my superlatives. But as an aid or a tool to allow the mind to drift, the soul to rest and energy to be replenished it works very well indeed. Not that the music is without merit, a few of the shorter songs in particular are striking and compelling, but for me at least this is an album that brings with it a broader and different experience much more than a mere musical one.
Conclusion. Atmospheric laden, well made and accessible instrumental rock is what we are treated with on this latest album by The Man From RavCon. Many songs contains elements that will be of general interest to progressive rock fans, some of the compositions will possibly fit within the genre convention(s) as well, but for me at least this is a production that feels more like a creation made to inspire the mind to wander and less for music to be listened to with full concentration to be able to uncover and decode what is going on. Those who understand that description and finds it to be alluring will most likely find this CD to be well worth getting more familiar with. Especially if psychedelic and cosmic details are appreciated in such a context.
Progmessor: February 25th, 2019
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