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Magellan - Symphony For A Misanthrope

Magellan - Symphony For A MisanthropeThe sixth album from the Gardner brothers Trent and Wayne is a little darker than the previous five, but still packs a punch in musical terms and song structure. Soon to be released in April 2005, this seven track album is well produced and is their latest offering after Impossible Figures which was released two years ago. The brothers are joined by guest musicians Joe Franco on drums and orchestral percussion, Robert Berry drums and bass on Why Water Weeds? Steve Walsh and Dave Mannion on keyboards on Symphonette.

The seven songs hit the forty seven minute barrier, and with the opening orchestral blast from Symponette which is a trade mark from previous albums, you know straight away this is a Magellan album. Symphonette could be a start of a movie theme with it's ELP style sound, but this soon leads into Why Water Weeds? and the guitar riff powers in along with the synths which in comparison has shades of Dream Theater and Rush, but the ELP influence is there too. The ballad type Wisdom starts with the acoustic guitar, and the dark piano chords sound deep with move the song along with a nice feel.

The eighteen minute epic Cranium Reef Suite is split into three parts and it starts like a single with it's 4/4, but when Trent's voice makes a appearance it takes off in a different mood, time changes and offbeats galore. Just six minutes in and the vocals glide and take control, and just three minutes later, the Abbey Road Beatles style is heard, and for me is the albums highlight.

The up tempo classical piano solo takes up the fifth track Pianissimo Intermission before the Metallica like power riffs take control in Doctor Concoctor. The synth sound is worth a mention too, but the fade out at the end takes you by surprise. Final track Every Bullet Needs Blood has a interesting sound, with it's funky Manchester sound bit in the middle, but the Red period King Crimson riffs towards the end make a nice touch and a pleasant ending to the song.

This is a good album, but a shade down I feel compared with the first two albums Hour of Restoration and Impending Ascension respectively, but it should sell well and appeal to their fans.

Danny Mayo



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