Edensong is a progressive rock quintet from New York City. The band's self-released debut “The Fruit Fallen” was released in the year 2008 and got some very positive reviews. However the band also released an album full of studio and live pieces, the official 2016 follow-up is entitled “Years in the Garden of Years”. A concept album with a duration of more then 70 minutes that has been released by the label The Laser's Edge.
James Byron Schoen - vocals, guitars; Tony Walkman - drums, percussion, gamelan, hang drum, vocals; Stefan Paolini - keyboards, hang drum, vocals; Barry Seroff - flutes; TD Towers - bass, vocals
Luna Sky - cello (1,2,3)
Eric Stephenson - cello (4,5,6,8,9,10)
Malcolm Piper - additional choral vocals (1)
Adrian Belew - vocal cameo (8)
The main part of this album consists out of an eight tracks containing conceptual epic entitled “Years in the Garden of Years”. This epic is embraced by the opener “Cold City” and the closing track “Yawn of a Blink”. Opener “Cold City” is a little bit hectic up-tempo piece with some heavy guitar parts and a delicious flute in the vein of Jethro Tull. And the cello gives the music a classical touch. I like the folk influences in the music of Edensong. But maybe I am a little bit biased because I love the music of Jethro Tull. What is not to say that the music of Edensong is very similar to that of Jethro Tull. The band is blending all their influences into an unique own style. As I told you before, “Yawn of a Blink” is the closing track of this album. This is also a hectic piece of music with the rhythms of heavy metal bands. Again there are some lovely flute parts in this up-tempo track.
But for me the most interesting part of this album is the long middle section with the eight tracks that are forming the epic “Years in the Garden of Years”. Those tracks are; “End times in retrospect, “In the longest of days, “The Hollowed”, “Down the Hours”, “Chronos”, “Generations”, “The Atman Apocalypse” and “Regeneration”s. End times in retrospect has a dark classical opening with acoustic guitars and the cello. But it develops into a diverse piece of progressive rock with classical and folk influences. But the drum work stays a little bit frantic. But this counts for almost the whole album. This is one of the aspects of the Metal influences of the band. “In the longest of days” is a diverse piece of music that has it moments but for me it stays a little bit hectic. The band is putting so much ideas in one song. The next track “The Hollowed” Is more my cup of tea. It has nice melodies and beautiful instrumental parts with flute and cello. And the orchestration is very nice. “Down the Hours” is again an up-tempo piece but it has also nice piano and flute parts The tension of the music is slowly building up towards a climax with heavy guitar work and frantic drum work. Another highlight is the track “Chronos”. This is because the tension of the music is slowly building up and has it's resting spots. The flute melodies make a nice contrast with the technically and skillfully played up tempo parts. And the bells section is just crazy. The short track “Generations” with it's delicate sung vocals is a kind of intermediate piece or bridge to the last two long tracks “The Atman Apocalypse” and “Regenerations”.“ The Atman Apocalypse” is a diverse piece of prog with delicious heavy Tull parts. The music is sometimes complex and intense but the song has also the so needed quiet moments. The slow opening of “Regenerations” feels like a whiffle of fresh air after all this complexity. In the end the tension of the music is slowly building up towards a nice climax ... well done.
The music on this album is often up-tempo and hectic. It is skillfully played by the band. But I can imagine that 70 minutes of this intense and up-tempo music for some listeners is too much. So I miss a kind of balance in the album. My favorite pieces are the pieces which has that greater diversity. For me “The Hollowed”, “Chronos”, “The Atman Apocalypse” and “Regenerations” are the highlights of this good progressive rock album with a heavy bite. I like the classical influences (cello) and the folk influences (flute). And in the up-tempo flute parts it is impossible to not think of Jethro Tull. So I can imagine that some Tull fans would be interested in this album. Check it out.