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Tracklist: 1. Shadows of the Past 7:27 2. Ice 10:11 3. Simple Man 10:14 All songs written, arranged, recorded, & produced by Deep Thought. Line-up: Dominic Pfleghaar - keyboards Marcel Oehler - guitars Patrick Merz - vocals Martin Altenbach - drums Dominik Rudmann - bass
Prologue. "Shadows of the Past" is the debut mini-CD by Switzerland's band Deep Thought. Their first full-length CD should be released at the end of the year.
The Album. On "Shadows of the Past" Deep Thought present a very traditional, ordinary, and simple Neo Art-Rock, even though there are no borrowed ideas in their music. The album's title track (1) is the simplest work here. This dramatic song is almost entirely based on the vocals, and a few of the short instrumental parts on it contain quite monotonous solos of guitar, while the parts of all of the other instruments serve mostly as a background for them. Nevertheless, a simple, yet, audible interplay between solos and riffs of electric and bass guitars and passages of synthesizer often supports the vocal parts of here. However, there are too little variation of different vocal and instrumental themes on Shadows of the Past and, thus, too many repetitions of the same verses, couplets, and even instrumental parts. It must be mentioned that both of the first songs on the album feature, in addition, elements of Neo Prog-Metal, while A Simple Man (3) is completely free of them. This song is slightly more diverse than the album's title track both vocally and instrumentally. However, with the exception of a very effective intro, the instrumental arrangements that are present on A Simple Man are for most part slow, placid, and plain. As for the vocals, they're of an optimistic rather than dramatic character here, unlike the album's title track. Ice (2) is the best among these three songs. The compositional and performance characteristics of it conform to the unwritten laws of a high-quality Neo Progressive. The vocal and instrumental arrangements are balanced well on it, and the latter of them are here quite diverse and interesting. Ice is the only song on "Shadows of the Past" that features the fast and virtuosi solo of synthesizer and a few passages of electric piano, as well as varied interplay between them and solos of electric and bass guitars and passages of acoustic guitar. Dominic Pfleghaar's drumming is on par with the musicianship of each of the other members of the band. Finally, I'd like to mention that Patrick Merz's pronunciation of English is better than that of many of the other non-English language vocalists who sing in English as well.
Summary. Most likely, this Swiss band consists of young musicians. So I hope that Deep Thought's first full-length album will be at least of the same compositional and performing level as that of the best song on the "Shadows of the Past" mini-CD, Ice.
VM. September 16, 2002
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