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Guildmaster, The: Liber De Dictis

Is there a harder working band than The Samurai Of Prog? The Guildmaster is a side project of the band, not so different than TSOP, but with more of an emphasis on folk music - is folk prog a genre? They released their first album The Knight And The Ghost in 2020, followed by their sophomore effort titled Liber De Dictis, and as usual the band offers something completely different from a thematic perspective, examining popular ‘sayings’, evolved from a European perspective. As far as personnel is concerned, Ton Scherpenzeel who played on the debut, has been replaced with Alessandro di Benedetti, who handles most of the keyboard duties. Like The Samurai Of Prog, the list of guest musicians is considerable.

The disc begins with a couple instrumental tracks written by TSOP mainstay Rafael Pacha. First is “A lo hecho, pecho”, beginning gently with traditional folk instrumentation, the melody airy with good feelings all around. Soon, symphonic prog and a wonderful lead guitar from Pacha unfold to delight the senses. This is followed by “A rey muerto, Rey puesto”, again leading with old/traditional folk music, the recorder is particularly pleasing, followed by a slapping bass lick and excellent keyboards, forging through ‘70s influenced progressive rock. With “Agora”, the band play through many changes, between Greek influenced folk music, dream-like phases, and tasty old school prog. Pacha’s guitar tone is robust and thick, another great solo spot. The multifaceted “Manos frias, Corazón caliente” takes the listener on a wonderful journey through folk, symphonic prog, and classical music. Great ensemble play from all four musicians (Pörsti, Benedetti, Pacha, and Bernard). On the melancholic/traditional “Suruista tehty Soitto”, Paula Pörsti adds some very nice vocals (in Finnish), accompanied by another tasty guitar solo from Pacha and lovely keyboards from Benedetti. This has to be one of the prettiest moments on the disc. “Agua pasada no mueve molino” is another excellent instrumental highlighted by Pacha’s virtuoso guitar work. There are six more tracks, all worthy of the excellent tag.

Like all TSOP releases, The Guildmaster has produced a wonderful sophomore album with Liber De Dictis. An absolute smorgasbord for your ears.

A Seacrest Oy release.

The Knight And The Ghost (2020)
Liber De Dictis (2022)

Track Listing:
1. A lo hecho, pecho (2:52)
2. A Rey muerto, Rey puesto (4:55)
3. Agora (6:24)
4. Manos frias, Corazón caliente (5:42)
5. Suruista tehty Soitto (6:02)
6. Agua pasada no mueve molino (7:01)
7. La Música amansa a las fieras (5:15)
8. Nea Polis (6:11)
9. La primavera, la sangre altera (4:23)
10. El perro del hortelano (4:46)
11. Young Me, Old You (11:20)
12. Suruista tehty Soitto II (3:06)

Added: January 24th 2023
Reviewer: Jon Neudorf
Related Link: Band @ Bandcamp
Hits: 582
Language: english

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