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Glorious Wolf - Aquarius CD (album) cover

AQUARIUS

Glorious Wolf

 

Crossover Prog

3.22 | 5 ratings

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aapatsos
Special Collaborator
Prog Metal and Heavy Prog Teams
3 stars Clocking at just under 40 minutes, ''Aquarius'' is the first full album of one-man band Glorious Wolf aka Ruud Dielen. The multi-instrumentalist takes a very measured approach in combining several influences; see for example the title-track trilogy where a Sabbathy opener gives its place to an outright ''jazz/lounge'' composition with a quirky bass line and then a bluesy prog-fusion third part in a much developed Hendrix fashion. Going further, tracks such as ''Shaman's Journey'' reminded me of the style of California Guitar Trio.

Ruud appears as an accomplished player with structured ideas. Perhaps the most interesting differentiating factor to similar instrumental works is his blues leanings, which tend to ''sweeten'' the sound and at the same time add a sense of nostalgia. Twin guitar overdubs provide the required depth to the sound, which could only perhaps criticised for the lack of "umph" on the drum sections. Aquarius sounds like a collection of mature compositions instead of a cohesive album but the opposite is an exception instead of the rule in instrumental efforts.

Classic prog rock is largely absent despite a Crimson-esque aura lurking in the background of several tracks - instead a Floydian and bluesy atmosphere is dominant, aided by jazz leanings and virtuoso playing. The addition of lyrics and development of these ideas in a more cohesive package would take, I feel, Aquarius a step further for Glorious Wolf. Vocals, where they appear (Messenger) don't impress but support the sound well. As it stands, it is a good selection of individual tracks and a real show of mastery of style and skill for Ruud.

Highlights: Aquarius (especially pt.2 and 3), Questions, Old Diamons Shine Brighter

aapatsos | 3/5 |

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