Fireworks

Presto Ballet - 'Relic Of The Modern World' http://rocktopia.co.uk/media/reviews/photos/thumbnail/200x200s/cd/23/f3/3187_prestoballetrelicofthemodernworld_1358735676.jpg Hot

Added by Central Electronic Brain     January 21, 2013    
 
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It may be stylistically retro but it's certainly music of the highest order.

Anyone reading my reviews of Presto Ballet’s previous three albums and their most recent EP will know that I have a very soft spot for their wonderfully retro style of Rock. Indeed, it was main man Kurdt Vanderhoof’s (guitars) vision that he would create music that harked back to the days when the likes of Kansas, Styx, Rush, Yes etc. ruled the airwaves. Using authentic analogue instrumentation from the era he and his cohorts create the sounds and feel of those heady times, the artwork is also of that period as is the length of the album, a concise forty minutes. There has been a change in personnel since the EP (‘Love What You’ve Done With the Place’) in that vocalist Ronny Monroe’s commitments with Trans-Siberian Orchestra mean he’s no longer available; he has been replaced by Chuck Campbell who appears to have little or no pedigree that I can find, but he’s tailor made for the role as his voice fits neatly into the band’s ethos.

From the opening acoustic guitar refrain of ‘The Chemical Age’ and the following synth interlude it’s evident that you’re in Pomp heaven and the memories come flooding back. It gets even better as a Rush vibe comes to the fore, reminding me of ‘Red Barchetta’, whilst the bridge and chorus lean towards Styx. Campbell’s vocals, on this track, are slightly different to Monroe’s, having a Geddy Lee (Rush) tinge to them albeit with greater vibrato; but they are just right for the material he is asked to deliver and he’s no one-trick pony. The track is underpinned by a glorious Hammond organ and it fair romps along exuding melody as it goes. The synth and guitar solos are sublime whilst the drumming of Chris G would do justice to Portnoy (Dream Theater) or Peart (Rush).

Fireworks - The Ultimate Magazine For Melodic Rock Music

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‘Watching the Radio’ has a heavy riff before a different groove takes over and an Argent (‘Hold Your Head Up’) style Hammond drives the tune forward. Lyrically the song reflects the era before MTV when people valued music rather than treating it as background or disposable. ‘Broken Toys’ features a staccato piano refrain which is supplemented by Hammond and a gritty guitar. I’m not fond of Kerry Shacklett’s (keyboards) ‘Prelude to Farewell’ a short instrumental that can’t decide whether it’s a serious classical piece or a frivolous silent movie soundtrack. The title track is an epic at nineteen minutes in length and it covers all the Pomp/Prog bases from the opening instrumental passage that features more delightful Hammond work, classic synth refrains, very impressive vocal arrangements and some tasty dual guitar sections. After the opening salvo there’s a guitar section redolent of Queensryche before the vocals arrive and Starcastle come to mind; later a well placed classical and piano led section provides another flavour to the piece.

So, it may be stylistically retro but it’s certainly music of the highest order.

Gary Marshall

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  • Berny : Apologies! Magazine can now be accessed from your download section. Best wishes, B.
  • Berny : @Martykelly: We're sorry
  • Martykelly : Just purchased issue 89 hoping its going to be in my download soon.
  • Johns Band : Will "Watch & Listen" music videos make a comeback. Just order H.E.A.T. "Live In London" CD.
  • Berny : @the trapps: Apologies for the delay in processing your order. The magazine is now available in your downloads section.
  • the trapps : waiting for the issue 89 which we purchased to be in our downloads section ???
  • Berny : @tomandpam: Many thanks for your purchase. The download instructions were sent yesterday, please contact me at «email» should you haven't received the email.
  • tomandpam : I paid for a download on issue 89 and didn't receive the download. Please let me know when I can get it. Thanks
  • Berny : @zom414: Fireworks Magazine #89 will be available at selected UK based newsagents on December 16th. The digital version can already be purchased in our Download Store.
  • zom414 : When's the next mag due for release?
  • Berny : @el nowy: Apologies for the delay in processing your order. Pls. check your mail!
  • el nowy : Hi, how long does it take for my download license to be available? I purchased it 3 days ago. Thanks!
  • Rocktopia Te : @l.thijs: Apologies for the delay, your digital copy can now be downloaded from your "My Downloads" section.
  • l.thijs : Hi Fireworks Magazine. I made a purchase on 10 nov and I paid by Paypall. I bought the #85 fireworks mag download for GBP3,50. But I didn,t receive anything. Please can you find out what's going on?
  • kazooba : I have digital versions of every issue from 27 thru 88, any way I can get issues 1 - 26 with cd's digitally?
  • Berny : @SeaDog57: The links are in the Fireworks menu. Have you tried scrolling down? Maybe your screen size is too small...
  • SeaDog57 : Berny; there are only links up to Fireworks 86. Which is kinda strange because i already downloaded CD 87 but i'm looking for the link to CD 88...Chris
  • Rocktopia Te : @Johns Band: Can you please contact us here: «email»
  • Johns Band : Fireworks Magazine 88 did not arrive by post. paid by PayPal. Any Suggestion.
  • Berny : @bpomper: Can you pls. contact the Rocktopia team here: «email»
  • bpomper : i found the problem..old email i can not access.i have tried to change it by editing my info but it wont allow. any suggestions
  • Berny : @bpomper: A reply was sent yesterday, We recommend checking your spam/junk mail to see if our message was filtered there. The magazine was already sent to your shipping address. Please let me know if you do not receive it within the next couple of days. Thanks for your patience!
  • bpomper : Thanks didnt of that. I still have not heard about fireworks 88 was it sent out. Thankyou
  • Rocktopia Te : @bpomper: For security reasons, we removed your previous message. Please do not post your private e - mail address. Many thanks for your understanding.
  • bpomper : Thanks for the reply. I see download but can you confirm that hardcopy was or is sent ou .thanks.the email i used is inder the contact me info of the website
  • Berny : @bpomper: Apologies for your troubles. Where did you send the email to? We haven't received anything. I will send you a longer reply via mail. Also, you can download the free CD from the "Fireworks" menu on top, but the CD links are only shown if you are logged in.
  • bpomper : 3rd email inquiring about my purchase of fireworks #88. i purchased on the 2oth of sept and today is the 24 with no response...paypal has taken the payment. should i have a down load of the cd for mu usa magazine. Looking forward to an answer
  • bpomper : hello i purchased fireworks #88 through paypal on9/23 and have not recieved an email from rocktopia. purchase is for a hard copy of the mag. should i have cd download instructions.when should i expect it
  • Berny : @Johns Band: I've just sent you an e - mail. Best regards, B.
  • Johns Band : I have ordered FM Live video and £1.99 taken from my PayPal account. How do I download video. Something gone wrong at processing with Fireworks. The links to report it do not work.

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