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(Phideaux) - "Snowtorch"

Reviewed by:

"Philip Wooldridge"- (Ravenheart Music)

(Female Fronted) {Rock/Symphonic-Metal}-(Music)
Release Date:
Band Members: Phideaux Xavier / acoustic guitar, piano, vocals Ariel Farber / vocals, violin
  Valerie Gracious / vocals Bloody' Rich Hutchins / drums
  Mathew Kennedy / bass guitar Gabriel Moffat / electric guitar
  Linda Ruttan Moldawsky / vocals, metal percussion Molly Ruttan / vocals
  Mark Sherkus / keyboards, piano Johnn Unicorn / keyboards, saxophone, vocals
Track Listing: 1.)-Snowtorch - Part One (19:39)
b.) Fox Rock 2
  a.) Star Of Light
c.) Coronal Mass Ejection
  b.) Retrograde)- d. '' ... ''' (2:34)
  c.) Fox On The Rocks
  d.) Celestine  
  2.)-Helix (5:54)  
  3.)-Snowtorch - Part Two (16:11)  
  a.) Blowtorch Snowjob  


Americans Phideaux led by mastermind and keys player Phideaux Xavier have been a top prog band and critics favourite for 8 years, and this is their eighth album, he is most certainly productive. Their music is classic early Genesis, ELP, Pink Floyd, Jethro Tull, Supertramp, Camel, Renaissance symphonic prog with a distinct English pastoral flavour. Joining Phideaux on vocals are ladies Ariel Faber, Valerie Gracious, and the Ruttan sisters Linda and Molly. This is very easy album to listen to, although the two main Snowtorch songs are very long (19 and 16 minutes), they are very well put together as they shift through the various parts, and it is all so familiar, like a montage medley of your favourite early 70's prog. This is an album that could have been released at any time in the last 40 odd years, with loads of vintage keyboards, fuzzy guitars, flute and violin. This has caused a slight difference of opinion, I believe prog means progressive not regressive, and that something new or different should be done with your sources, but my 70's prog fan friend loves the way Phideaux rekindles the spirit of the 70's masters, they are nearly all dormant so he's more than grateful that someone is still carrying the torch. This in no way decries or demeans the standard of music on offer here which is exemplary. I particularly like their playfulness, with song titles that stir fond memories of Caravan silliness such as 'Blowtorch Snowjob' and the final brief epilogue which you could merrily morris dance to. They also released a couple of singles last year, available separately, which I have used to bulk up this short album by prog standards (further releases are planned), 'Strange Cloud' which for some strange reason reminds me of that other very retro band Oasis, and the ripping good rocker 'Tempest of Mutiny' which was a collaboration with Rich Mouser and Ann Burstyn from Dream Aria that was intended as a graphic novel tie-in about Pirates, telling the tale of Captain Jack Rackham and Anne Bonny. The nub of the matter is that if you love classic 70's prog, then you already be heading to their website , a vintage 8.5 out of 10.





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