STORMS OVER STILL WATER
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MOSTLY AUTUMN Storms Over Still Water CD
Top Customer Reviews
Well, this album has been such a struggle for me. So much here that I ought to be loving and raving about, but so much that infuriates as well. I've ended up coming to the conclusion that I like this record simply _because_ of its contradictions and inadequacies, but more of that anon.
Mostly Autumn (MA) are clearly in the English prog tradition, branching out from Songs from the Wood era Tull or A Song for All Seasons era Renaissance: here are the crunching riffs, the sprinkling of soaring female vocals, sudden changes in time signature and offbeat lyrics that meander through leafy Albion, when they're not speculating about sci-fi prophecies or supernatural love affairs. There's an athletic multi-instrumentalism, a tincture of flute and mandolin and ne'er a concession to dance rhythms or drum machines. Most laudable.
And yet... and yet... In terms of songwriting, MA aren't Tull and boast no Ian Anderson among their ranks; the vocal stylings are energetic, but there's no Annie Haslam knocking your socks off with multi-octave trills. It's all pretty good, but it doesn't really rise above the "pretty good".
The cute thing about Mostly Autumn is that nobody's told them they're not out of the top drawer, as composers or performers.Read more ›
I first discovered Mostly Autumn last year via a US internet radio station called Radio Paradise. There isn't much chance of hearing them on the UK airwaves. That's a great pity, as their music blows away much of what you'll hear on radio in this country, even on specialist rock stations.
Storms Over Still Water is a varied album. I wouldn't say there are any weak tracks, but (as with all the Mostly Autumn albums I've heard) there is a wide range of musical styles, and most people will prefer certain tracks to others.
Another reviewer mentions as favourites Out of the Green Sky and Ghost in Dreamland. These are relatively short, fizzy numbers, the closest Mostly Autumn come to mainstream pop. Personally I prefer the longer, more lyrical tracks such as Candle in the Sky, Carpe Diem, and the title track. I'd love to see any of these performed live.
Mostly Autumn have been compared with Pink Floyd, but that doesn't really do them justice. Their music has similar melodic qualities to Floyd, but there is also a strong Celtic influence. Another difference is that whereas Pink Floyd numbers tend to focus inwards, on alienation and paranoia, Mostly Autumn have a more outward-looking stance. Several of the songs on this CD (Black Rain is the best example) concern nature and the environment.
If you haven't heard Mostly Autumn yet, but you like Pink Floyd, King Crimson, Led Zeppelin, Yes, and so on, I'd say you owe it to yourself to give them a try. I'd also particularly recommend their two-CD album 'Catch the Spirit', which is a great value introduction to their music. Also available from Amazon!
I ordered this album from their own record company and it was worth the wait. It begins with the fade out from the previous album Passengers, and remains a strong album throughout. Best bits?
Apart from the whole album, I'd say that the opening track, Out of the Green Sky, with Ghost in Dreamland and the fantastic title track itself. I've often wandered what the band would be like live; I caught them at the recent free festival in Richmond, North Yorkshire and the band blew me away (almost literally as, due to the press of people, I ended up near one of the main speaker stacks).
Be good to yourself, buy this album and enjoy an amazing band.
So, from not knowing what to expect, I was transfixed from the opening song and swept along mesmerized until the very last notes had faded. What power! What pace, almost unrelenting! What wonderful music, superbly arranged. And songs with a "conscience" to boot! This is a progressive rock band that rocks! Where is my superlatives dictionary?
I have seen some unflattering reviews comparing Mostly Autumn with Renaissance and Jethro Tull (because they use a flute!). Jethro Tull are a fine band but, to me, Mostly Autumn owe nothing to them. Renaissance are perhaps a closer approximation but Mostly Autumn have taken the "rock" in "progressive rock" much further than Renaissance ever did. I would say that, certainly on "Storms Over Still Water", the music is rock guitar driven, whereas it never was in Renaissance. Mostly Autumn pack far more punch. This is not to say that the keyboards and other instruments are forgotten or underplayed; no, each plays a strong part in fusing together powerful songs.
Unlike many other "prog rock" bands that I've heard, Mostly Autumn often generate real pace and power which they alternate effectively with slower passages to create a range of moods and emotions through the music. A good example is in "The End of the World", an ironic bitter-sweet song which takes you through simple loving, homely scenes whilst chronicling the destruction of the world! This song is followed by "Black Rain", an environmentally conscious song that delivers real pace and power to great effect.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
never heard of them until I saw them at classic rock Yarmouth,,so i bought this cd,a great buy,,chilled out sort of Floyd stuffPublished 21 months ago by mr p lillie
This was the first Mostly Autumn album I bought, a pot-luck purchase. I can definitely see where another reviewer is coming from when using the term `endearing'. Read morePublished on 2 Mar. 2010 by Moonkeh
I tell you what: How on Earth does a band like Mostly Autumn not get put on the radio more (at all even) is beyond me! Read morePublished on 2 Aug. 2006 by Mr. T. F. Norton