We keep on digging in the material of this great band. After the success of their last album "The last bright light" they decided to record a CD inspired by the book of Mr. Tolkien's "The Lord of the Rings", pushed by the last big success of the film. A record that they wrote, recorded and mastered in 14 days. It seems impossible according to the great quality of the work.
The main characters of this story are exactly the same as the last album. Bryan Josh (guitars , lead vocal), Heather Findlay (lead vocal, guitar), Iain Jennings (keyboards), Liam Davison (guitar), Angela Goldthorpe (flute, vocals), Andy Smith (bass), Jonathan Blackmore (percussion).
This album is a bit different from their previous ones. It's a record where the band risks much more in terms of arranging and producing. Their sound is more epic, it sounds like a big performance. It's a powerful and spectacular presentation of their known formulas. I guess that the greatness of the script needs this kind of arrangement.
The artwork is little but very beautiful, maybe it needs some more of the same kind of artwork, but what we've got is really fantastic. Just like the music. The pieces are all a wonder. We keep on being in the medieval era, with great medieval flavors and all kind of instrumentation that confirms it. This time there's less Victorian sound. The guitars are more electric and powerful, the wind instruments are here a great element and also the percussion.
Inside the record the compositions are all different to one each other. We find huge instrumental pieces mixed with soft and acoustic vocal ones, more on the way of the band. The guitar of Bryan Josh keeps on being the main character very well accompanied by the rest of the instruments. "Overture - Forge of Sauron" is an spectacular introduction made of powerhouse guitar riffs and a keyboards that creates an epic piece of great progressive structure. "Greenswood the great" relaxes in the beginning a bit with a vocal theme with some cello and acoustic guitar. "Goodbye alone" & "Out of the Inn" are again a tour de force by a Floydian guitar and Tullian flute, with an spectacular sound and medieval environment."On the wings of Gwaihir" reminds me a lot the dark and mysterious atmospheres of "Animals" of Pink Floyd, one of the best pieces of the record. "At last to Rivendell" & "Journey's thought" are two sweet and calm compositions. "Caradhras the Cruel" is a powerful song with a strong guitar and is very well arranged. We can hear again Heather Findlay's guitar in "The riders of Rohan" & "Lothlorien".
The most spectacular composition besides the opener is "The return of the King". A great atmospheric guitar combined with the voice of Bryan Josh which delights our ears with enjoyment. With a little acoustic ballad called "To the grey havens" this CD comes to an end.
If they keep on doing so well they will come far. They never stop surprising me. This record I'd like to recommend although it is out of the style practiced by them during their career. Mostly Autumn takes progressive music to the highest level. A prog-rock that seems not to be in its best moment. Well, what I tell you is that you don't have to miss this record and any of this band's records.