[ KEY REVIEWS | SHORT REVIEWS | DETAILED REVIEWS
TRACK LIST: 1. Mental Argue 5:02 2. Factory of Illusions 11:20 3. Signs From the Sky 7:55 4. Beggars Breakfast 2:34 5. An Approach To Mankind 12:38 6. Dreaming the Circus 9:06 7. Selling the Moon 17:23 All music & lyrics: by Mindgames. LINE-UP: Bart Schram - lead & backing vocals; acoustic guitars Rudy Vander Veken - electric guitars Tom Truyers - piano & synthesizers Eric Vandormael - basses Benny Petak - drums & percussion With: Joris Jacobs - flute (on 2) Ward Opsteyn - flugelhorn (on 6) Katelijne Van Kerckhoven - cello (on 1 & 4) Fred Flores - vibraphones (on 1, 2, & 5) Jean Yovanofski - engineering, mixing, & mastering Recorded at 'YO Sound', Brussels. Produced by J. Yovanofski & Mindgames.
Prolusion. "International Delight" is the debut album by the Belgian band Mindgames.
Synopsis. The music of Mindgames is inspired by Classic Symphonic Art- and Space Rock of the 1970s in general and is influenced by Yes and Pink Floyd in particular, which concerns both of the vocals and instrumental arrangements here. To be objective though, there aren't many of the evident influences on "International Daylight", and the number of original arrangements on it is larger than that of influenced ones, even though the latter are present on most of the songs here. The predominant stylistics of the album is a moderately complex Classic Symphonic Art-Rock with elements of Symphonic Space Rock. It is presented on Metal Argue, Dreaming the Circus, Factory of Illusion, An Approach to Mankind, and Selling the Moon (1, 6, 2, 5, & 7 respectively), though all three of the latter songs feature in addition the bits of Space Metal. All the arrangements on these five songs are very interesting and are filled with progressive features typical for the genre, which, above all, is the merit of bassist Eric Vandormael and pianist Tom Truyers, both of whom are the most inventive and masterful musicians in the band. Beggar Breakfast (4) is the Classical Music-like piece with a few vocals and is the only song here that was not performed by the entire band. The instrumental arrangements on this brilliant and completely original song consist of diverse and very beautiful interplay between passages of acoustic guitar and piano and those of violoncello. As for the remaining song: Signs from the Sky (3), the inclusion of it in this (66-minute!) album was a gross error. This is the only song here, the music on which represents just a banal Neo. What's central however, is that one of the two vocally instrumental themes here was stolen from Status Quo's greatest hit, In the Army Now.
Conclusion. I have ambivalent feelings about "International Daylight". On the one hand, this is quite a strong and interesting album overall. On the other hand, I hardly stand anything that is opposed to originality, not to mention any barefaced borrowings. Having summed up the positive and negative aspects of Mindgames' debut, I found that overall, this is just a merely good album. And nevertheless, I am almost sure that "International Daylight" will have a great success among the lovers of Symphonic Progressive.
VM: May 6, 2003
[ KEY REVIEWS | SHORT REVIEWS | DETAILED REVIEWS - LIST | BANDLISTS ]