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Kentish Spires: The Last Harvest

Kentish Spires is a new progressive rock band from the UK. With a name like that you might expect a little Canterbury influence in their sound and that is exactly what you get. There is an Englishness quality to this album that I found completely refreshing. That is to say they have developed their own sound while keeping with past greats of the genre.

In the band are Lucie V (vocals, violin), Danny Chang (guitars, backing vocals, percussion, additional keyboards), Paul Hornsby (soprano, alto and tenor saxophone, bass clarinet, flute, recorders), Rik Loveridge (keys and guitar on “Hengist Ridge”) and Phil Warren (bass).

The first track “Kingdom of Kent” has a dramatic feel due to some of the lead vocals and nicely arranged keyboards and winds. The melodies are great throughout and the musicianship is tasty and thought provoking. The classy nature of this track really appeals to me and when the band slips in vocals and sax that recall Pink Floyd’s best moments including “The Great Gig In The Sky”, well, I had to put this one on repeat a few times. The British band Preacher also came to mind. “Sprit of the Skies” is notable for its flute soaked soundscape, boisterous piano, razor-like guitar and abundant Hammond. “TTWIG” has a slower tempo and reminded me a little of Steely Dan. The flute and vocals are highlights. The catchy “Introception” is a bit more weighty as the guitars offer more crunch going for a hard rock sound. The thirteen minute title track ends the album with a flourish of outstanding progressive rock. Outstanding tempo shifts, sax solos, spine tingling lead guitar and tasty keyboards add to its charms. This band, while being excellent musicians, never get into the self-indulgent ‘see how fast we can play’ trap. Nothing wrong with that either but it isn’t what this band goes for. This is much more nuanced and more subtle than that.

I just love the Canterbury inspired progressive rock Kentish Spires has produced with The Last Harvest. Another fabulous new band for progressive music fans to latch onto. Highly recommended.

Track Listing:
1. Kingdom of Kent (11:11)
2. Spirit of the Skies (4:20)
3. TTWIG (3:45)
4. Introception (7:10)
5. Hengist Ridge (4:35)
6. Clarity (3:59)
7. The Last Harvest (13:08)

Added: January 30th 2019
Reviewer: Jon Neudorf
Related Link: Band's Facebook Page
Hits: 706
Language: english

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