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(EP Review) EMERALD DREAM - Emerald Dream

Release date April 2020 (Independent)

Emerald Dream's self-titled EP is one of those albums that a reviewer struggles with. While the album often forces its way onto the turntable, its contents remain hard to describe, forcing the reviewer to delay writing about it.

In this specific case your intrepid reviewer struggles with a few things when putting fingers-to-keyboard about this release. Firstly, the music found herein varies wildly and is incredibly hard to consume for this metalhead; it oscillates (often within individual tracks) from prog rock, to classic rock, to NWOBHM, to hard rock, to psychedelic, to classical, and even folk. Secondly, the lead vocals are akin to the clean vocals of prog bands that I usually steer clear of (if not outright run full speed away from!). Think Jethro Tull and Genesis. Lastly, the preponderance of piano is jarring to these decibel-battered ears, especially during the heavier musical passages.

However, despite all of these seemingly negative points, I've come to embrace this five-track, thirty-minute release precisely because of these same elements. It's so wildly unique to these ears, yet still within the metal/hard rock milieu into which I usually delve, that it continues to draw me into its tantalizing grasp. Highly recommended for those who are looking for well-written and performed albums on the hard rock/metal periphery.

(8.5)

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