Sunday, February 8, 2009

Pendragon - Pure (New Album)

I can't re-tell about their previous since I don't have it, but I can say that from Masquerade Overture to Pure, it's definitely a new band. On this one Pendragon takes a bit more than just Genesis and Pink Floyd as their main influences, you can hear some Prog-Metal/Heavy Prog in the majority of the songs, rather than the semi-soft sound of the 90's with a lot of melody and stunning Moog solos. Pendragon of the 90's here is almost gone, except for Nick's stunning guitar solos, the rest is history:

The album launches with Indigo, a 13 minute song divided brutally in two halfs; the first half being dark and heavy, dominated by Nick's powerful guitar, Clive's keys are barely present and doesn't showcase's his talent; the second half is compromised by a soft rythm, very Floydish, lead mainly by Nick's guitar solo. I really don't think the passage from heavy to soft here is very well achieved, seems like 2 completely different songs, which it would have been better if they were seperated. Still, a powerful, though unexpected, intro for this album.

The next song is Eraserhead. Another song that is quite unexpected from them, from the semi-frantic intro with the un-typical Moog(for Pendragon) to the typical Pendragon chorus with Nick's nice voice. The song has a lot variation, once again, ending with some odd keyboard chords, but soon to Nick's unforgettable guitar.

-From the first 2 songs, you can't expect the typical Pendragon. You hear a much more fierceful band, exploring new territories as the ones mentioned before.-

The album continues with the three part epic, Comatose. Part 1 and 2 embraces all of the characteristics mentioned before. Some very heavy riffing and odd sounds performed by Clive. Part 3 is a bit more typical Pendragon, but you can definitely hear a different climax, the climax you heard on The Window of Life or Masquerade Overture is gone forever(well at least in this album). In general, it's a quite good performed and thought epic, it's just a bit of nostalgia of their old sound that makes it feel a bit weak for me.

For more oddities, you have The Freak Show. A heavy pop song. Besides the metal-ish opener, the song is quite simple compared to the rest of the songs of the album, once again the keyboards have a minor role on the song. Overall, a catchy heavy song.

The album ends with the romantic, semi-depressing(not a bad thing), It's Only Me. The song develops from the soft melody of Nick's guitar and Clive's piano, to a bit more powerful but still gentle on vocals, with Nick's fantastic guitar solo giving a special touch to the song. A nice ending to the album.

You may think that I don't like bands to change of style or that I'm close-minded, I must say that I like very much when bands change of style even more when they're stuck and don't know what to do, other than repeat old formulas. But in this case, the change of direction is quite radical and unexpected, still it creates a heck-of a album with some stunning compositions as the epic or Indigo. In the end a well crafted album, but with some misses like the focus on Nick's guitar, or having some experimentations which could have been omitted or done it better, also Clive's role in this album is almost null, which in Pendragon's case the keyboards have a very important role.

1 comment:

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