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Three Of A Mind: Towards The Light

An Orlando three piece of likeminded outlook, Three Of A Mind grace us with their debut, Towards The Light, an album of gently progressive leaning and electro-synth base. It makes for an intriguing mix, an almost 70s prog meets 80s pop concoction cooked up. The three band members, Paul Dean (vocals and bass), Bill Bailey (presumably not the UK musical comedian, on vocals and percussion) and Bob Fischer (vocals and keyboards) – no guitars, you'll note – often interlink vocally and yet while some of the synth passages, such as that in "Dolphin", reminds gently of Jean Michel Jarre, things are often dragged down by uninspired, or plain unexciting singing. Whereas the likes of Neil Tennant (Pet Shop Boys) may have actually become a more interesting prospect the more remote and off hand his vocal intonation became, for Three Of A Mind, it often feels like the singing is simply an afterthought. Factor in that everything sounds a little gloomy, and not in an introspective Riverside manner, more a dreary sigh and a shrug, and Towards… becomes more of a weary trudge than a joyous journey, even if the lyrics are varied, intelligent and well intentioned.

Often in prog that isn't the huge issue it might be elsewhere, plain but impassioned singing sometimes the bedrock for many an engaging outfit, however here the music itself can often be slow and sparse, leaving a gaping hole that a truly talented singer could fill magnificently. Resulting in long instrumental passages of almost slowly ambient feel meandering along and lacking for a true idea of where they'd like to end up. Things do still remain reasonably atmospheric, but "Red Neptune", "Heliocentric" and "Take You There" can all too often drift by without you really noticing. Add in a flat mix where a very honest recording leaves little hidden but even less glistening in the light, and while there's undoubted talent on display, there are disappointingly few nuances which truly snag the interest. "New Age" is a perfect example where an interesting vintage keyboard intro makes way for a perfunctory melody line and tippety-tappety drums. Yes, the keyboard solo the song contains certainly hints at greater intrigue and yet with the lifeless vocals coming soon after, once again the overriding feeling is one of nearly, but not quite.

It's hard to be too tough on a trio of musicians who've obviously poured their heart and soul into Towards The Light and maybe, just maybe, a cutting edge production and harsher outside ear might have suddenly given this album the impetus it sorely lacks. However in its current guise, it's hard to honestly suggest there's too much of any great wonderment going on here.

Track Listing
1. Hyperspace
2. Dolphin
3. New Age
4. Red Neptune
5. Sci-Fi My Life
6. Prelude to the Fall
7. Take You There
8. The Unreasoning Mask
9. Heliocentric
10. The Longing

Added: March 20th 2016
Reviewer: Steven Reid
Related Link: Three Of A Mind online
Hits: 1502
Language: english

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