Fifth album released by the norwegian band Kerrs Pink and the first one after the disappointment of “Art of complex simplicity” (1997). After a five years lapse, this Cd brilliantly opens a new stage.
I´ve always thought that Kerrs Pink is a extremely dull band placed somewhere between the most recurrent neoprog with some drops of Camel melancholy and some winks to folk music. I´m not going to lie saying that “Tidings” is a stream of originality, but at least the songs are not as insipid as in the previous albums.
The band´s line-up is as follows: Harald Lytomt (guitars), Freddy Ruud (keyboards), Lasse Johanssen (keyboards), Jostein Hansen (bass), Knut R. Lie (drums, backing vocals), Lasse Tandero (vocals).
The first track “Hour Glass” (5:32) already warns us about what we´re going to find through the rest of the album. Tandero´s melancholy vocal timbre paints pleasant vocal melodies as the rest of the band plays beautiful and peaceful instrumental moments , with Lytomt´s guitar as main role. In this track there are female soul vocals sung by Tracee Mein that provides the music a touch of elegance and originality.
But the second track is one of the highlights. The marvelous voice of Lillian Heidal and Per Vigo Nilsen´s violin gives “Tidings from a distant shore” (8:30) a special feeling. Too many echoes from Camel´s “Harbour of tears”, ok, but the celtic influences, the melodic guitar solos and the sensitivity inside every second of the track makes this track the best of the whole CD.
After this song Kerrs Pink returns to neoprog sheepfold with “Shooting Star” (9:40), a very well built song with lots and different shades. Pink Floyd, Marillion or Camel influences can be found along with other inadvisable influences by bands like Saga or third division neo-prog bands like Jump. The addition, again, of soul female vocals give some interest to the track. The ten minutes of “Yumi Yeda” bring back the style of the second track: lots of folk, lots of melody in a nice track where the guitar has a leading role. Mostly Autumn and Pink Floyd´s music come to my mind. The interplays between guitar and keyboards, and the atmospheres are the best of the whole song. As a roller coaster, now it´s time for “Moments in life” (8:37) where only guitar solos could be saved. The height of bizarre is the sort of rock´n´roll sung by Tracee in the middle of the song. I don´t know why the band sticks this part inside the song.
Now it´s time for a good song. “Mystic Dream” (9:46) is a song with lots of feelings in a neo prog vein. The rhythm section supports some wonderful guitar solos. There´s also a melancholy piano in the middle of the track and, after it, an amazing crescendo and climax. A very original song.
The last track “Le sable s´est écoulé” (5:38) is a strange instrumental that blends different tunes taken from all the previous tracks. Undoubtedly, another highlight.
Since the band haven´t released a new album since 1997 I don´t know the future of the band. If they follow the path of “Tidings from some distant shore”, “Yumi Yeda”, “Mystic dream” or “Le sable s´est écolué” this band will have a brilliant future because they could be placed in a crossroad with Camel´s melancholy sympho style and Mostly Autumn´s folk. But I don´t see a bright future if they go on composing tracks like “Shooting star” or “Moments in life”. The female vocals are amazing and a point of originality.
An album with lights and shades but as a whole is a elegant work. Perhaps it won´t be the album of your life, but I´m sure it´ll give you very pleasant moments.