First time on progVisions, but “Godspeed” is the third album of the Belgian band Fish On Friday. Producer and musician Frank van Bogaert and keyboard player William Beckers established Fish On Friday as a studio-based Progressive Rock project in the year 2009. Their “Shoot The Moon” debut album was released in 2010 and the press compared their music with the progressive side of the Alan Parsons Project. Their second album “Airborne” even gained a wider audience and got my attention because my favorite bass and Chapman stick player Nick Beggs (Steven Wilson, Steve Hackett, Lifesigns) was guesting on one track. Nick Beggs is now a full member of the band.
End of October of this year (2014) the label Esoteric Antenna (Esoteric Recordings / Cherry Red Records) has released the third album of Fish On Friday; “Godspeed”. The band is working on this album also with some special guests. The most famous of them is Theo Travis (Steven Wilson, Robert Fripp) who is playing saxophone and clarinet on the track “Ghost Song” and flutes on the track “Callin' Planet Home”. The album is packed in a beautiful digi-pack with artwork of Michal Karcz. I would also mention my Face Book friend Anne Catherine de Froidmont who made the beautiful drawing for the track “She Colours The Rainbow”. You can find this drawing in the booklet.
Dany Caen - backing vocals; Nina Babet - backing vocals; Henri Ylen - saxophone; Theo Travis - flutes, saxophone, clarinet; Stef Caers - backing vocals; Chantal Kashala - backing vocals; Blondie - barks
The album opens with the first highlight of the album, the title track “Godspeed” (10:15). It is one of the more progressive songs and the longest track of this album. A track with great diversity and great melodies. The vocals and backing vocals are just amazing, but in fact this counts for the whole album. Maybe this is the connection with the Alan Parsons Project. But in my opinion the fans of progressive rock music will like Fish On Friday even more. What a great song to open an album.
One of the first things you will notice when you put this album in your CD player is the crystal clear sound and the great production. It is one of the best sounding albums I have heard this year.
Second track “Just A Nightmare” has a great opening with full symphonic keyboards. But then the band comes with amazing vocal harmonies and melodies. Beautiful track with a nice saxophone part played by Henri Ylen. Then the band slows down with the beautiful ballad “She Colours The Rainbow”. In the transparent production of this album you can hear clearly the wonderful sound of the bass of Nick Beggs. What a beautiful track! On the up-tempo track “Callin' Planet Home” you can hear besides the catchy vocal refrains also some nice electric guitar parts and great flute work by Theo Travis. “Ghost Song” opens with a delicate vocal part and then develops into one of my favorite tracks of this wonderful album. The vocal melodies and the delicate instrumentation of this song are very beautiful. The saxophone solo is now played by Theo Travis. “Radio” is an ode to the radio station “Caroline”. The lyrics are funny and recognizable ... “And the Buggles killed the radio star”. This is one of the more Pop orientated songs of “Godspeed”.
More interesting for us is the next track “Sanctuary”. In the slow parts of the song you can hear some nice acoustic guitar. The vocal refrains are again very catchy. I would also mention the wonderful keyboard orchestrations on this track, but of course this counts for the whole album. The next song is called “Stay”. This beautiful ballad reminds me again of the Alan Parsons Project. Beautiful keyboard orchestrations, delicate instrumentation and vocal harmonies, a great song. “Don't love me to death” is a love song about the possessing character of love. You can hear a nice synth solo and some nice keyboard sounds in this track. “Tick Tock” has beautiful melodies and vocal harmonies and keyboard orchestrations ... But now I'm repeating myself. Well it is just a great and consistent album, you won't find any weak points. Even the short closing part “My Dog” about Blondie (the dog) is beautiful and funny.
Well what can I say more. “Godspeed” the third album of Fish On Friday is a beautiful and consistent album without any weak points. You will find amazing melodies, vocal harmonies and keyboard orchestrations on this wonderful album. Beautiful arrangements and a crystal clear and transparent production. It is one of the best sounding albums of this year. Highly recommended to the lovers of melodic progressive rock.