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Ramses - Light Fantastic CD (album) cover




Crossover Prog

2.16 | 17 ratings

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Prog-Folk Team
3 stars Like many 1970s symphonic prog groups, German or otherwise, Ramses faced challenges in the 1980s. They felt they had to streamline their sound, or else oblivion would be their fate. Sadly, even this process rarely succeeded, perhaps because the prog ghosts are everywhere on such recordings, and few fans or programmers had the taste for it anymore.

While the lengthy epics with major instrumental workouts are all but gone, and the pop orientation is often simultaneously underwhelming and overbearing, ultimately "Light Fantastic" is a worthwhile listen if you enjoy early 1980s neo prog and dumbed down 1970s styles. Like Eloy, Ramses took the Alan Parsons project approach as they entered the decade, and songs like "Force of Habit" and "Earth in the Dark" are convincing tunes with strong vocals, melodies and excellent arranging and playing. They also threw in a bit of Fleetwood Mac in "Transport of Joy". Sometimes the choruses show a lack of imagination, as in the otherwise engaging title track, but only the opener "Sorry Ma" is completely dispensable.

"Light Fantastic" sports barely the vestige of "La Leyla" or "Eternity Rise", and is not an original work at all, but then even Ramses' early recordings were highly derivative of what was going on at the time, or several years before, so taken in the context of its time, this is a good, not great album that deserved more notice.

kenethlevine | 3/5 |


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