Top positive review
14 people found this helpful
one of their best
on 20 December 2005
This album oozes with talent from all the band members. Justin, John, Ray and Graeme are all well represented here. Justin has the single 'the voice' that opens the album. It is a nice mid tempo song with subtle keyboards and acoustic guitars, but not a stand out. 'Talking out of turn' is a John ballad that has an excellent melody and nice orchestral overdubs. His voice is a little weak to be a stand out track though. 'Gemini dream' is the other single and is a collaboration between John and Justin. It is a fast paced keyboard orientated rocker. It is the only track where Moraz's synthesiser work threatens to take over. On their 1986 album 'the other side of life' this would have fit perfectly and been a stand out track. Here, it is mediocre.
The album really picks up after this and the rest of the songs are pure genius. 'In my world' is an instantly likeable Justin ballad. It is a really romantic soft song, awash with loads of acoustic guitars and a beautiful melody. An instant stand out. 'Meanwhile' is Justin's other contribution, which is a mid tempo folk ballad. It is also beautiful with nice lower vocal meldodies and a catchy chorus.
Graeme contributes '22,000 days'. It is an unorthodox but brilliant song. It has a nice riff going and John's lead vocals are better suited here. The chorus is sung by Justin, John and Ray, with some really nice harmonica passages from Ray.
'Nervous' is a stand out John ballad. It is beautifully soft at the start, with some nice flute work from Ray. It almost becomes anthem like in the chorus part and the play out instrumental section is spectacular.
Ray is well represented on the last three tracks. 'Painted smile' is a familiar theme for Ray. It seems like a happy go lucky buncy song, much in the vain of 'Carousel' from his solo album. However, if one looks at the lyrics, it is a really deep song. Fantastic music and an interesting arrangement, away from the acoustic rhythm, bass, drums approach.
'Reflective smile' is a 30 secnd spoken passage, leading into what is possibly the best track on the album 'Veteran cosmic rocker'. An amazing melody, brilliant strong baritone vocals from Ray, and excellent eastern and rovky instrumental passages. This track most harks back to older Moody blues, with subtle sitars used, which can be heard right at the end of the album.
A fantastic album, which really shows the band had not lost the talent from the crucial first seven albums.