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Kaukasus - 'I' http://rocktopia.co.uk/media/reviews/photos/thumbnail/200x200s/54/ec/8f/kaukasus-i-67-1421610904.jpg Hot

Added by Central Electronic Brain     January 18, 2015    
 
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Kaukasus really have come up with something special which Prog fans will lap up.

Kaukasus are a new "super-group" from Scandinavia featuring Mattias Olsson (White Willow, ex-Anglagard), Rhys Marsh (The Autumn Ghost, Opium Cartel), and Ketil Vestrum Einarsen (Jaga Jazzist, Motorpyscho). I have to hold my hands up and admit that I haven't heard anything by these aforementioned bands. After the first couple of listens I was wondering what I had let myself in for, however repeated spins have been extremely rewarding and the album has deservedly been receiving rave rewards.

Opener 'The Ending Of The Open Sky' begins with a buildup of drums which lead into flutes and other woodwind instruments and a heavy fuzzy guitar. After a couple of minutes the track makes the walls shake as all the instruments come together; there is also an eastern influence. First single 'Lift The Memory' is my favourite of the seven tracks and is the bright light amongst a dark trip. Again it starts with powerful drumming from Olsson and melodic vocals from Marsh who also plays some lovely guitar. The vocal style sounds reminiscent of Roy Khan (not so much from his Kamelot tenure but from his Conception days) which is praise indeed. There is a lengthy flute/ keyboard passage from Einarsen which then leads into more heavy, fuzzy guitar.

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'In The Stillness Of Time' has a very Jazzy feel to it, especially with the bass and piano, and again some passionate vocals from Marsh and this merges into instrumental 'Starlit Motion' which is Floyd-ish with its swathes of keyboards and some Camel-esque flute. 'Reptilian' is the longest track clocking in at just over nine minutes. It reminds me of King Crimson and contains solid drumming, laidback vocals, swirling keyboards and various woodwind instruments again, in places it is very dark.

Shortest track 'The Witness' is a prelude to the final track and is a slow number with mellow bass lines, atmospheric vocals, gentle keyboards, flutes (and you name it) with lyrics that reference the final track 'The Skies Give Meaning'. The closer also builds up slowly with some fine drumming before a thunderous distorted guitar crashes in. Marsh chants out the lyrics towards the end of the song and this is a powerful finale.

Kaukasus really have come up with something special which Prog fans will lap up and I can't wait for album number two.

Az Chaudhry

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