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Tracklist: 1. The Velvet & the Steel 4:02 2. Jive To the Moon 6:12 3. A Ghost In Your Head 3:07 4. Nearby the Willows 4:46 5. Across the Seas 3:32 6. Overload 5:58 7. Wonderful World 5:07 8. Love, Love, Love 3:07 9. Lost Garden 6:51 10. Pretty Girl 5:17 11. Lucy In the Sky 3:48 12. Back To Paradise 7:19 All music and lyrics by Rosebud. Produced by Rosebud. Line-up: Frederic Rossi - vocals; guitars Thierry Paya - guitars Philippe Malivoir - keyboards Emmanuel Haas - bass Thierry Mennel - drums Guest musicians: Isabelle Skaper - backing vocals (on all tracks) Felix Paci - percussion (on 9 & 11) Moli Kurtz - trumpet; cello (on 4) Recorded, mixed, & mastered by Jean-Pascal Boffo at "Amper" studio, France.
Prologue. I have never heard of this band until know. I only know that "Rebel" is just a "Rock" (simply "Rock") division of Musea Records. In other words, it should produce a traditional Hard Rock / Pomp Rock / AOR. However, this album was recorded, mixed, and mastered by none other than the famous French musician and composer Jean-Pascal Boffo. To read the review of his latest album, click here.
The Album. It turned out to be that the contents of Rosebud's album "Lost Garden" not completely conform to my above definition of "Rock", which is kind of a trademark of Musea's sub-label "Rebel". The album's opening track The Velvet & the Steel is nothing else but a typical AOR 'hit' consisting of the seemingly endless repeats of all the same couplets and refrains and very simple instrumental arrangements. The music that is featured on Jive To the Moon and Nearby the Willows (tracks 2 & 4) represents just a slightly Prog-tinged AOR with the elements of Hard Rock. Both of the last compositions on the album, Lucy In the Sky and Back To Paradise, consist of structures that are typical for the so-called Pomp Rock. In other words, these are songs that are more or less rich in Neo-like instrumental arrangements. Musically, both of the songs A Ghost In Your Head and Across the Seas (3 & 5) represent a Prog-tinged and rather strong Heavy Metal with the elements of Grunge. All five of the remaining tracks, Overload, Wonderful World, Love-Love-Love, Lost Garden, and Pretty Girl (tracks 6 to 10) are the real centerpieces of this album. There, the vocal parts are based on the strong and rather diverse guitar riffs and a powerful work of the rhythm-section. The best stylistic definition of the instrumental arrangements of these songs would probably be a blend of Symphonic Art-Rock and Hard Rock. These arrangements are definitely progressive, and although they're rather accessible, all the solos, passages, and interplay that are featured on them, are truly though-out and tasteful. As well as the majority of the French Hard 'n' Heavy and Prog-Metal bands, Rosebuds sing in English.
Summary. Within the framework of Proto-Progressive, "Lost Garden" could've been regarded as a very good album if its contents would not have been that motley. However, if you like Proto-progressive Hard Rock in general and the latest albums of Bad Company, Styx, and even Queensryche, in particular, on the whole, you should be pleased by Rosebud's "Lost Garden" as well.
VM. May 27, 2002
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