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Pendragon - The Masquerade Overture CD (album) cover





3.98 | 598 ratings

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Second Life Syndrome
Prog Reviewer
4 stars "The Masquerade Overture" is my fourth foray into the world of Pendragon. Thus far, I've heard "The Window of Life" (5 stars), "Not of This World" (5 stars), and "Believe" (a strong 4 stars). So, I've been extremely impressed, to say the least. Pendragon is certainly a band that hasn't gotten as much recognition as I'm beginning to believe they deserve.

Anyways, back to the album. "The Masquerade Overture" is another strong album from this band. The sound is similar to that of their other 90s albums, so the overall style is sweeping, soaring melodies with great choruses, deep themes, and glorious artwork. This album in particular is often considered their best work, and I can see why that is.

However, I don't find myself enjoying this album as much as their other work. There are certainly some 5 star songs on here, such as "As Good as Gold" and the incredible duo of "Paintbox" and "The Shadow". Yet, some of the other tracks stoop a little lower, as I find it hard to discover much inspiration in them. They're just there: filler. "Guardian of My Soul" and "Masters of Illusion" just don't do it for me. So, the album ends on a lower note. That always has an effect on my view of the album as a whole.

I also find the concept to be a little more ambiguous and less memorable. This would be forgivable for other bands, but Pendragon has bulldozed my brain with profound concepts that I actually think about for some time, even when not listening to the album. Not said, the theme is pretty good notwithstanding, as it seems to be a celebration of those people that push and push for change and excellence in living, but also a warning about those that are only out for their own good. The sheer ambition and grace that the former possess is what this album emphasizes, but then it always reminds you of that king in his castle and his sacred cow--- those that rule others out of pure greed.

Overall, though, this is another strong showing for Pendragon. This band is becoming one of my favorites, and albums such as "The Masquerade Overture" are a fine showing of why that is.

Second Life Syndrome | 4/5 |


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