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The Flower Kings -– Unfold The Future

The Flower Kings - Unfold The FutureWell, here we are again reviewing another Flower Kings album, and since Flower Power, it is a double offering and the first one to feature new member Zoltan Csorsz on drums. Now, we have 16 tracks (17 if you are early with the bonus track Too Late For Tomatos, which is a bit of a instrumental jam) and opening and closing the album are two long classics. First on disc 1, The Truth Will Set You Free, which starts off all instrumental, then it explodes into a Yes type Going For The One sound. I must comment on Jonas Reingold's bass playing, again his bass in your face is more up front than previous FK albums, and it works well on this album. I would say that Truth is one of the highlights on this album, and following it Monkey Business is a 'cheeky' little number with a funky type Gentle Giant start, and a nice rocky middle and end. Black And White is nice gentle number, and it eventually builds up into a pleasant jig type ending, in which Tomas Bodin's keys guide it along quite nice. The Crimson type instrumental piece Christianopel, is next featuring some clever inventory percussion which leads us onto the excellent Silent Inferno, nice riffs and organ sound on this one. Roine Stolt’s guitar really comes through here, and the feel of the song makes this another highlight. The last two tracks end the first disc in a mellow mood, The Navigator is a very gentle moody song, and Tomas' keys make you follow it well, then Vox Humana is a little faster than the last one, but still gentle and is perfect to end disc 1.

Disc 2 opens with the Fragile Yes period Genie In A Bottle, and for Crimson fans a nice Fripp type riff. Fast lane is as the title says, fast rhythm and clever vocals all the way through it, and dare I say, a perfect single!!

Grand Old World is another gentle one, but with the added sax, adds to the magic of nice harmonies. It is fair to say that Roine takes the more lead on vocals on this album, but Hasse Froberg makes his appearance now and again. Soul Vortex is again a nice flowing number with jazz like guitar sound. Rollin' The Dice is a Purple type number, and you do detect a bit of Bowie on vocals too. The Devil's Danceschool features a trumpet and is very jazzy; again Jonas plays well on bass. Man Overboard features nice flowing keys and again is a gentle number, and reminds me of a Hackett number. Solitary Shell is a strong song, again a slow gentle one, but has a strong edge and it is the shortest track clocking in at 3:10, but the final track Devil's Playground is the second longest hitting 24:30, and is a true prog belter! The haunting keys and the timpani's move us through many angles of the Genesis mid-period sound. This is my favourite on the whole album, and it rates along side Garden Of Dreams and Stardust. With powerful riffs, it will be a prog classic in years to come. 

Well, there you go, a nice journey in over two hours. Another classic offering from the Flower Kings, it feels like Christmas already, but I am trying to work out which tracks will be aired on the forthcoming tour! You get great playing as normal, and a perfect album to get into. Hats off again to the Flower Kings!

Danny Mayo

 

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