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Porcelain Moon - Swan Song CD (album) cover

SWAN SONG

Porcelain Moon

 

Crossover Prog

4.03 | 3 ratings

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Matti
Prog Reviewer
4 stars The second (and last, considering the title?) release of this Swedish-speaking Finnish band is a 26½-minute EP. Several bands have put out only EP's lately; being very much an album listener, I don't like this trend, but naturally a good EP is a better alternative than a half-baked album or nothing at all. By the way, I haven't yet had a good listen to their debut album, so I'm reviewing this release without comparing it to the previous work, free of expectations.

The band sound is great, suitably powerful and even ballsy at times. The music has a retro feel, resembling vintage psych/hard rock -flavoured prog of the 70's. Not necessarily British, perhaps some Scandinavian bands come closer. This release is instrumentally oriented, and what's more important, male vocals are totally absent. Charlotta Kerbs's voice brings delicious contrast to the masculin and intense playing, and she's got the needed strength too. In fact I'd like to hear more of her singing here.

'Trädens talan' ("Tale of the tree") is a superb 9-minute prog composition full of life. Fast, organ-heavy intro is followed by a song section that starts very calmly with only piano and acoustic guitar backing Charlotta's slightly folky vocals, before the more powerful band sound takes over again. Nine minutes seem to pass all too soon! 'Magma', which hardly refers to the French Zeuhl legend, is a fast instrumental rooted in the repetition of a ballsy guitar riff. Synths howl to create a Space Rock atmosphere. The other instrumental (with a Finnish title meaning "a loop to the Moon's crescent") starts slowly in a PINK FLOYD style. The wordless singing may bring 'The Great Gig in the Sky' in mind, even though the tempo-increasing composition is quite different from it.

It's seamlessly followed by 'Castle' (hmmm, three various languages in track titles...), another meandering prog masterpiece with plenty of dynamic changes and vocal sections woven beautifully to the whole. Sadly this short release leaves me hungry for more, but frankly I don't remember hearing a better EP, probably ever (the one by Octopie is also very strong musically, but it's marred by not-so-good vocals). Warmly recommended!

Matti | 4/5 |

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