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Sylvan: One To Zero

Purveyors of the concept album, German proggers Sylvan return with their tenth studio album One To Zero. The story tackles the autobiography of an A.I. from its own perspective, as it was created to save the environment by repairing what mankind has damaged over the years. The A.I is driven by eternal self-optimization, and goes through a coming of age, but all the while dealing with its human creators, and internal conflicts and imperfections which lead not to self-destruction, but the beginning of a new life cycle.

Sylvan deliver highly melodic keyboard and guitar driven music. Their influences fall firmly into the neo prog realm. The songs are full of memorable melodies, and crisp production. Guitarist Johnny Beck is prone to emotive solo’s that bring to mind Marillion’s Steve Rothery. Keyboardist Volker Sohl’s beautiful piano motifs often set the mood for the more airy lush tracks. Vocalist Marco Gluhmann has an excellent and expressive voice, and his inflections often remind me of the lead singer from The Crash Test Dummies, “Part of Me” is an example of that style. The same track features a wonderfully orchestrated outro for Beck’s guitar to soar over. The album does not necessarily flow like a concept album, the songs stand separately from each other, and themes are not recycled throughout the 10 tracks. The concept does not intrigue me, but, it does not take anything away from my enjoyment of the music. Sylvan will show some muscle adding heavier elements, like the guitar and keyboard interplay on the opening “Bit By Bit”. Standout tracks include the previously mentioned “Bit By Bit”, “Encoded at Heart” has an amazing chorus, “Go Viral” and “Unleashed Power” are also favorites. I plan to listen to more of Sylvan; One To Zero is a must for fans of Neo-Prog.


Track List:
  1. Bit By Bit (6:18)
  2. Encoded At Heart (6:43)
  3. Start Of Your Life (3:14)
  4. Unleashed Power (7:31)
  5. Trust In Yourself (5:32)
  6. On My Odyssey (6:26)
  7. Part Of Me (9:16)
  8. Worlds Apart (3:57)
  9. Go Viral (6:41)
  10. Not A Goodbye (10:14)

Added: June 10th 2021
Reviewer: Eric Porter
Score:
Related Link: Band Website
Hits: 718
Language: english

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