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progVisions

progVisions is a progressive rock e-zine, published in English and made by an international group of members. Our objective is to become a centre of information that contributes to the knowledge, growth and development of progressive rock.

album reviews

album review

Karfagen - Continium - 2006


    
“Ukrainian band Karfagen makes instrumental art rock with bright melodies”

Anthony Kalugin formed the band at school in the year 1997. While he was studying at the architectural university (1998) he began to record the first Karfagen (Karthago) album. In a complete different style than nowadays. In 2000 Karfagen played some gigs but soon afterwards the band felt apart. The only members left were Anthony Kalugin and his close friend Sergei Kovalev (accordion and harmonica). In 2002 Anthony completed his first solo album "The Water". The years after that he played on more than 40 albums that were released in Russia and Ukraine. Some of them were commercial new age relax projects. With those projects he raised the funds to record the first Karfagen album and in 2005 the band reformed and went into the studio to record "Continium".

Antony Kalugin - Keyboards, Percussion, Vocal on "Close to Heaven"; Oleg Polyanskiy - Piano, Organ, Keyboards; Sergei Kovalev - Accordion; Kostya Shepelenko - Drums.

Guest musicians:
Roman Druid - Bass; Roman Jilonenko - Acoustic & electric guitars; Georgiy Kafunin - Flutes, Wheel lira, duduk, and some effects; Oleg Koralaev - Nylon guitar; Marso - vocal line on "Silent Anger", lead vocal on "Close to Heaven"; Timorphy - vocal line on "Amused Fair"

"A Winter Tale (part 1)" is divided in "Out of the Deep" that opens with a slow synth intro with keyboard strings, birdcalls and a melody with flutes and "Into the Light" that has a simple but wonderful melody that slowly builds towards a symphonic climax. Absolute the highlight for me of this wonderful CD. "A Winter Tale (part 2)" exists of "On the air" and "Summer song". The first is a happy up-tempo tune full of delicious keyboard and guitar parts. This keyboard drenched art-rock sounds like the best symphonic rock. "Summer song" starts with a broad carpet of organ and is combined with flutes and a kind of accordion that sounds like Ullian pipes. "Silent anger" has beautiful melodies on the accordion and flutes. The keyboards are divers and piano and acoustic guitar gives this ballad the final touch. "Old legends" is also full of keyboards, flutes and guitars but the main keyboard is the piano. Karfagen makes delicious melodic sympho. "All that I think about you" is a delicate classical piano piece. "Amused Fair" is one of the most divers tracks on this album. You can hear that the band is influenced by the sympho bands of the seventies. Their music sounds fresh and has an own identity. In this track you can hear a beautiful flute part which reminds me of bands like Camel or Focus. "Stone talk" is mysterious. "Marvelous dance" is up-tempo and has some nice guitar parts. "Muse" has delicate guitar parts and a beautiful flute. "Close to heaven" the bonus track, is the only vocal track with lyrics. But because the music of Karfagen is so divers, you don't miss any vocals on the album.

The Ukrainian band Karfagen makes instrumental art rock with bright melodies. You can hear that the band is influenced by the sympho bands of the seventies. Some tracks has great symphonic parts. Then this keyboard drenched art-rock sounds like the best symphonic rock. Because of the diversity of the music you will never be bored or miss any vocals. I enjoyed listening to this album very much. Karfagen makes delicious melodic sympho. Their music sounds fresh and has an own identity. Can't wait to hear the new music Anthony Kalugin is working on.

Douwe Fledderus - December 2006
rating - Unicorn Records

 

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