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TRACK LIST: The Motherland: 1. Rivers of Gold 5:43 2. The Unease-1 2:31 3. The Unease-2 1:11 4. Distant Dream 1:16 5. Longing for Home 2:24 6. The Wee Hours 3:54 7. Into the Dream 6:35 8. New Adventures 9:35 Seasons: 9. Sunrise 0:55 10. Summer Breeze 3:26 11. Last Days of Summer 4:38 12. Winds of Fall-1 2:26 13. Winds of Fall-2 1:31 14. Winds of Fall-3 2:00 15. Winter Freeze 1:43 16. Winter Storm & A New Day 6:46 17. Spring in the Air 4:07 18. Finale 3:05 19. New Adventures Reprise 1:16 All tracks: Adventures. LINE-UP: Terje Flessen - electric, acoustic, & bass guitars Odd-Roar Bakken - keyboards; acoustic guitars Stein-Egil Bratland - drums Vebjorn Moen - vocals With: Elisabeth Nilssen - flute (on 1) Stine Mostervik - flute (9, 10) Produced by Flessen, Bakken, & Bratland. Engineered by Bratland.
Prolusion. ADVENTURE is a very obscure Norwegian band. To all appearances, their eponymous debut is their only album, at least for the moment.
Synopsis. According to its creators, the idea of it is a 65-minute "Adventure" representing two EPs, each being subjected to different concepts, which, however, concerns lyrics only. Well, the only pause on the CD lies exactly between The Motherland (tracks 1 to 8) and Seasons (9 to 19), but musically, both of the parts have so much in common that it would be rather pointless to describe the tracks that they consist of separately, and not in the context of the album as a whole. Ten out of the nineteen tracks are songs, seven of which are done within the framework of the same stylistics, notably distinguishing them from the rest material. These are Rivers of Gold, The Unease-1, Into the Dream, New Adventures, and Winter Storm & A New Day, Spring in the Air, and Finale (1, 2, 7, 8, 16, 17, & 18). The music is full of dramatics, is highly diverse and complex and is undoubtedly original and very interesting as well. Personally, I see it as the Viking Progressive Metal with the sizeable quantity of unalloyed and separately standing Symphonic Art-Rock structures. The parts of electric guitar, vintage Hammond and modern synthesizer are usually at the helm of intensive arrangements, and those of piano, acoustic and classical guitar are predominant in softer ones, though there are mixed, electrically acoustic, textures on each of the said songs as well. The album has an epic sound throughout, regardless of the fact that most of the tracks here are short and aren't necessarily of the same stylistics. But as implied above, the music flows fluently from one track to another and has its logical development on each following piece. The other tracks are free of heaviness completely, and many of these have some mixed Viking- and minstrel-like feel to them. The instrumentals Longing for Home, Winds of Fall-3, and Last Days of Summer (5, 14, & 11 respectively) and the song Summer Breeze (10) are about a full-fledged Symphonic Art-Rock, though acoustic instruments were used only on the latter two of these. Three more instrumental pieces: The Unease-2, Distant Dream, and Winter Freeze (3, 4, & 15) are structurally close to Longing for Home and Winds of Fall-3, but were performed without the rhythm section. The remaining five tracks: the songs The Wee Hours and Winds of Fall-1 (6 & 12) and the instrumentals Sunrise, Winds of Fall-2, and New Adventures Reprise (9, 13, & 17) are all based either on passages and solos of classical guitar or interplay between them and the parts of piano or flute. Even the shortest pieces on the album are excellent.
Conclusion. "Adventure" is a musical paradise for the lovers of Symphonic Prog-Metal and various: electric, mixed, and purely acoustic manifestations of Classic Art-Rock. It is strange that this amazingly original and interesting album still remains obscure to the general progressive audience. Highly recommended.
VM: May 10, 2004
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