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Taliesin: The Tally Of Lies And Sin

The Australian band describe this release as an e.p. but at 37 minutes its longer than most of my Gentle Giant or Le Orme albums! It is the culmination of many years of band changes and periods of inactivity since 1995 and quite a few mastering issues since they started trying to lay the tracks down in 2002. Despite this rather patchy genealogy, the result is a moderately good prog-metal release. The band has a classic vibrato rock voice in Dave Howe and the scything guitar of Richard Mosely fits nicely with its grumbling twin in the opening song, "Tunnel Vision". A good feature here is the 'shadow' vocal part opposite the main singer.

"Life Goes on" kicks in with a frantic bass and guitar metal vamp and overlays a soaring smooth vocal with bright guitar highlights and is a fairly typical heavy prog-metal song. Despite the band being named after the fabled Welsh Bard, the songs are primarily focused on modern day strains and disappointments with the play on words of the album title being apposite. The exception is the penultimate track which appears to take the listener back to the concept of Serfdom and mediaeval punishment. "Lost Soul Drift" slows the pace slightly and the following track, "Swarm" shows the band's lyrical, softer side in its intro while the song develops carefully to a stronger pace and some fine guitar work. For me this is the best crafted piece on the album, albeit showing some AOR tendencies.

A good stereo range crossover effect opens the powerful and doom laden "Superstition", the most interesting lyric of the six songs. It reminds me of the Italian prog-metal band Time Machine's rendition of Galileo's life and punishment in style and focus. It is the most complex work in terms of time signatures, solo spots and mood/tempo changes and was probably the one song they had to re-engineer umpteen times I suspect. The complexity makes it slightly more messy than it need be I feel but still effective and adventurous. "Simple" is a typical melodic prog-metal effort with touches of Uriah Heep present to close a long awaited debut.

Track Listing
1. Tunnel Vision
2. Life goes on
3. Lost soul drift
4. Swarm
5. Superstition
6. Simple

Added: July 4th 2008
Reviewer: Richard Barnes
Related Link: Band's My Space Page
Hits: 2331
Language: english

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