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Simon Railton - Here It Is CD (album) cover


Simon Railton


Eclectic Prog

1.15 | 12 ratings

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Conor Fynes
Prog Reviewer
2 stars 'Here It Is' - Simon Railton (3/10)

Come on, you guys. It's not that bad.

Over the past month or so, I have witnessed a flurry of reviews bashing this poor album like a pinata at a suger-pepped children's party. So, who has inspired such a fit of mob rage? Simon Railton is a composer of music that Prog Archives has boldly labeled as 'eclectic prog'. What does this mean for the everyday listener? Railton's major label debut 'Here It Is', is a blistering mix of instrumental progressive metal and electronic music. What has made the album such a hot topic within the prog underground is the particular way in which the electronic sound is used. In this particular case, it is not to make distinctly 'electronic' or 'spacey' sounds, but rather imitate real instruments through a kitschy, lo-fi, and ultimately charming budget production. 'Here It Is' may have prog rock fans clicking their heels together and wanting it all to go away, but I have a feeling that the widespread hatred of this is simply because it is years ahead of its time.

In terms of our current, primitive music scene, Simon Railton's music could draw quick comparisons to a work in progress. As a guitarist, he is clearly a skilled musician, pulling off some admirable leads in such memorable hits like 'Intrusion'. The synths used here are much within the realm of prog rock canon. If you've read this far, you may ask: "Why would these reviewers voice such a distaste over something that has guitars and synthesizers in it?" Alas, the grand Rosetta stone that may seek to unlock the enigma lies within the rhythm section, as well as Railton's vanguard experimental approach to songwriting. In note of the former, the drums here are given an ironically hollow sound to them, much like an 8-bit video game soundtrack. Simon Railton has seen fit here to tickle our Freudian inner child; for those of us born within the cusp of the electronic age, the video game beats heard herein will bring us back to a simpler time, where we once drank hot chocolate in front of the television and systematically annihilated pixellated galaxies before bedtime.

I would never imply that the other reviewers do not have a point about the album; there are certainly aspects about 'Here It Is' that continue to puzzle me, and puzzle me forever. However, that's part of the mystique and intrigue that lies behind 'Here It Is'. Simon Railton has composed a Rubik's cube of a musical journey, paired with a brilliant sense of restraint that has led him to use only the most basic production standards available. By severing the shallow tendrils of overproduction, Railton's music makes for a startling, cerebral, and at times, downright arousing experience.

Conor Fynes | 2/5 |


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