Some of our readers might remember about a year ago we reviewed a CD by a little known Australian band called Tarot (no relation to the popular Finnish band of the same name), and they are back again with their latest release for Heavy Chains Records, titled Reflections. Once again the trio of The Hermit (guitar, organ, synths, vocals), The Hierophant (bass), and The Magician (drums) weave some mysterious, melodic, hard edged prog rock throughout the album, filled with tasty guitar work, loads of vintage sounding keyboards, and dreamy vocal passages.
"Autumn Conjuration" kicks things off in majestic fashion, as lush acoustic guitars, organ, synths, and loads of Wishbone Ash styled guitar solos permeate a proggy/psychedelic haze. For the more upbeat "Heed the Call", the feel is again Argus era Wishbone Ash, mixed with Uriah Heep/Deep Purple styled organ, with some crisp riffs and melodic solos ever present, along with a healthy groove. The Hermit's haunting organ reminds of legendary Heep member Ken Hensley on the dramatic "Strange Dimensions", another heavy '70s prog rocker, and "Cloak and Dagger" amps up the volume as the organ & guitar riffs propel against a solid wall of bass & drum rhythms, the song coming across as something right out of Demons & Wizards era Heep. The title cut sees the band break out their acoustic guitars and channel their inner Led Zeppelin for one of the albums more tranquil tunes, but it doesn't last long as "Mountain Throne" is another hard rocker featuring some layered vocals floating over biting lead guitar, crunchy riffs, and pounding bass lines. Tarot close out Reflections with the pastoral "Living For Today", a haunting prog/space rock number with dreamy vocals, organ, synths, and floating guitar work, reminding a bit of classic Eloy.
Just when you thought you had this band all figured out on The Warrior's Spell, they come out with this surprise and throw all sorts of new things into the mix. While I think a name change to take away the confusion with the much better known band from Finland would do them a wealth of good, the fact is that these guys are creating some seriously great music that NEEDS to be heard by fans of '70s hard rock, prog, and psych. Wonderful stuff yet again by this Aussie band, so make sure you don't miss out and click the link below for more info.
See more about this release on our recent YouTube show!
1) Autumn Conjuration
2) Heed the Call
3) Strange Dimensions
4) Cloak and Dagger
6) Mountain Throne
7) Living For Today