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is the wonderful CD Cover by artist Ed Unitsky.
Artwork © Ed Unitsky www.edunitsky.net
Track Listing - Click on the link below to read about the album track by track
listen to samples of the tracks while you read by clicking play on the
1: Ode To Grey Mornings
15 minutes plus, Ode To Grey Mornings is without doubt a progressive epic
for the modern age. Made up
of five connected sections, it examines the ancient themes of good and
evil. This is explored
through the lives of two people as the events of the early twentieth
century engulf them. Innocence
is set in pre-first world war rural England and tells the story of two
young lovers at one with nature and blissfully ignorant of the gathering
storm. The pastoral ambience
of Innocence is replaced by the staccato phrasing of the second movement,
Pleasureís Mine. Dark in
tone, this second interlocking piece explores the loss of innocence as
lived through the parallel experiences of the two lovers.
One faces the demons of an abusive landowner, and the other the
bloody nightmare of the Somme. The
context of their loss is different, but the impact absolutely the same.
The Journey marks both their painful post war meeting, and the
rebirth of hope. Rich in
reflective quality it provides a moment of respite following the intensity
of the previous section. Rebellion
marks their unification into one soul and one common purpose as they move
forward hand in hand. The
marching of time resonates through this passage as together they begin to
navigate their past, present and future.
Rebellion is uplifting, powerful and celebratory, and concludes in
a wave of ambience. Wiser is
the moment of self-realisation and brings into one place the various
themes and motifs of the previous movements.
It is the symbolic return to a spiritual home, a full turn of the
circle, of lives lived and loved. In
the shadow of the solitary magpie and the keeper of time, the lovers sing
their story, their Ode to Grey Mornings.
2: Sands Of Time
the lens of three millennia, the tale of an Egyptian slave is told.
The story of everyday lives during the time of pharaohs and the
great pyramids are recounted in a tour de force of an epic scale.
Eastern motifs swirl like a dervish across an incessant driving
beat, and the almost soundtrack quality of the orchestration takes the
listener on a cinematic journey through time.
The destiny of the slave and the boy pharaoh are entwined as one,
marking the single fate of all human kind.
Sands of Time is a rumbling storm of symphonic rock embracing all
the signatures of the idiom whilst marking our fresh territory.
With this piece Aquaplanage confirm their not only their dexterity,
but also their sublime power and majesty.
3: Natureís Sunday
connection between man and his environment runs through the heart of
Aquaplanage. Natureís Sunday is a memory of a day spent as one with the
world around us. It reflects
on the sights and sounds, the movement of the fauna and flora, and the
central all imposing impression of a mountain landscape in which we are
but a passing shadow. This
sensitive piece builds slowly and atmospherically, the gentle guitar
figures weaving with the piano cadences.
Harmony vocals rich in blend signpost an almost folk like quality
to the collective muse. Then
like the eagle rising on plumes of air, Natureís Sunday takes off in a
celebration of scale and grandeur that honours the remembering of the
moment. The urgency of the
modern age is represented by the competing themes as the song rushes
towards a coda that reclaims the ending of another day.
Natureís Sunday plays out manís eternal battle to seek balance
and harmony in his life, to be as one.
evocative instrumental that uses an array of keyboard sounds to conjure up
the mystery of the universe and beyond.
This wonderful piece starts with an intensity and fire that
captures the birth of the cosmos. Spirals
of sound mirror the expansion of our solar system as the ingredients of
life spread across the eternal sky. As
the tempo slows and the tonality changes to a curious otherworldliness, we
can sense the start of life as gas finds form, and form finds order.
As it draws to a conclusion, the pace again begins to rotate and
pulse, anticipating as it does the end of our sun, our Solara.
is the title track and an instrumental masterpiece of stunning beauty.
The sound of choral chants and echoed refrains gives way to an
acoustic guitar signature that recalls the medieval courts and the age of
chivalry. Hypnotic and
soothing it draws the listener into a world of passion and intrigue.
The timeless concerns of love and life are played out in an aural
landscape in which human emotions are laid bare. Here is the soundtrack for our lives, for past times
remembered, for moments to come. Personal
and universal, Aquaplanage is a song for all seasons, for all our days,
6: Heavenís Gate
a moment in your life when you will look behind at precious time thatís
spent. This universal concern is played out in a ballad that
celebrates undying devotion across the ages, and how the passing years
redefine and reshape all the loves of our lives.
Heavenís Gate is the first love, it is the lost love, it is the
sum of passion spent and received. Set
against the infinite backdrop of the cosmos, this evocative piece also
explores the eternal questions of who we are, why we are here, and where
we are going. Heavenís Gate
shows another side of Aquaplanage, a momentary counterbalance to what has
come before, and what will follow.
7: A Song To Stand Above Them All
uplifting piece sees Aquaplanage in strident and swaggering from as they
raise the tempo and temperature in this joyous hymn to the spiritual power
of music. Just as the search
for the mythical lost chord has long occupied the minds of musicians and
philosophers alike, A Song To Stand Above Them All addresses the unending
quest for the one true song. In an arrangement that teases the listener at every twist and
turn, the guitar takes centre stage and requires absolute attention.
The vocals weave in and out with consummate ease, and together with
a sympathetic rhythm section and sparkling keyboard runs, the collective
drive the song to its glorious finale.
A Song To Stand Above Them All is a celebration of the art form, a
tribute to the enduring legacy of the classic rock format, and a rallying
point for the faithful in these uncertain times.
in many ways represents the genesis of Aquaplanage, the template for the
concept, and the beating heart of the project.
An instrumental rich in emotion and intensity, its evocative
phrasing lends the piece a truly international appeal.
Piano and guitar play to each other across the counterpoint of the
rhythm section, the arpeggios hinting at China whilst the repeating
refrain conjures up images of a film noir France.
In many ways another cinematic journey that demonstrates the
ability of Aquaplanage to present their music as a soundtrack to the human
experience. Together with its
sister piece Aquaplanage, Theme represents one part of couplet that
showcases the more measured and reflective side of the bandís agenda.
9: One Star
simple terms, a Christmas song and nothing more.
However, in true Aquaplanage fashion there is more than a taste of
the progressive about One Star. Acoustic
guitar underpins an arrangement in which the keyboards come to fore and
provide a festive feel that anticipates the cascading choral vocals.
Magical and joyful, One Star echoes the great Christmas songs of
the early 70ís when the likes of Greg Lake and Jethro Tull brought a
progressive angle to this much dismissed musical genre.
Unashamed and unabashed, this is Aquaplanage at their most playful.