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Crystal Palace: Dawn Of Eternity

Why mess with a great thing. That was my initial thought after listening to German progressive rock band Crystal Palace and their new album Dawn Of Eternity, the follow up to the excellent The System of Events released in 2013.

The band formed in 1994 and have released a total of seven studio albums thus far, including the two mentioned above. In the band we have Yenz (vocals, bass), Frank Köhler (keyboards), Tom Ronney (drums) and Nils Conrad (guitars). Guest musicians include Markus Reuter (guitar) and Dominic Kröger (vocals). Mixing and mastering was done by Yogi Lang (RPWL).

Like their previous album, Dawn Of Eternity continues in a similar vein, highly melodic art rock music that will appeal to fans of the moodier side of progressive rock. Porcupine Tree especially come to mind but one thing must remain clear, Crystal Palace are not plagiarizing anyone as they have their own sound and style. So, the moodiness created in The System of Events is there in spades, the main difference being that album was a little heavier than their latest.

The disc includes eleven strong tracks starting with "Dawn", a short instrumental piece setting an ominous tone with some chilling drones and cool sound effects. The set truly begins with the awesome "Confess Your Crime" that has the band venturing from lighter shades to heavier motifs complete with soaring vocals and guitar. The soundscape isn't overly dense allowing for great clarity and separation amongst the instruments. Throughout the disc the instrumentation is as tasteful as it gets, particularly the guitar and keyboards and the vocals are very good as well. "Eternal Step" is another moody track where Floyd-like guitar work and smartly played keyboards should appeal to a broad range of progressive rock fans. "Any Colour You Need" begins with a somber piano melody as an enveloping shroud of moodiness pervades the music. The vocals have a cool echo effect and as the music subtly builds, crashing riffs add a heightened sense of drama. More stand out tracks include the heavier "Fields Of Consciousness" that has the band channeling a bit of Porcupine Tree, think Fear Of A Blank Planet and "The Day That Doesn't End" where the guitar soars once again. This one subtly reminded me of Ultravox upon first listen.

Dawn Of Eternity is moody, melodic and brilliantly played from a band that is slowly becoming one of my favourites of the genre. Another winner from the gentle art of music label.

Track Listing:
1. Dawn (2:35)
2. Confess Your Crime (8:26)
3. Eternal Step (6:31)
4. Any Colour You Need (8:19)
5. Daylight After The Rain (3:32)
6. Fields Of Consciousness (6:35)
7. Hearts On Sale (5:45)
8. Eternity (2:00)
9. All Of This (5:43)
10. Sky Without Stars (5:21)
11. The Day That Doesn't End (4:15)

Added: July 8th 2016
Reviewer: Jon Neudorf
Related Link: Band's Official Site
Hits: 2312
Language: english

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