Re: Kompendium - Beneath the Waves
Posted by: pjs ()
Date: December 28, 2012 10:37PM

My review from Fireworks Magazine:

KOMPENDIUM – ‘BENEATH THE WAVES’ (Tigermoth Productions)

Over three years in gestation, this magnificent multiple-genre meisterwerk from Magenta’s Rob Reed - and incorporating lyrical input from his brother Steve - produces a gamut of emotional response from the attentive listener across its 67 minutes. If you seek intelligent, uncompromisingly beautiful, wonderfully performed music that delivers a very special aural experience and packaged to enhance the musical experience inside, for now you need look no further than ‘Beneath The Waves’ an album that should find broad appeal amongst readers of this magazine.
Reed has assembled a remarkable coterie of talent to deliver his vision. Key vocalists Steve Balsamo (as Connor) and Angharad Brinn (as Lilly) are supported by the sumptuous English Chamber Choir (conducted by Guy Protheroe), vocal group Synergy, operatic stars Sian Cothi and Rhys Meirion and for a brief starring moment, folk singer Barry Kerr who appears in the complex, sensational, 11 minute track ‘The Storm’ that lies at the heart of the album. Instrumentally too, there is a galaxy of star contributors amongst whom are Troy Donockley, Steve Hackett, John Mitchell, Nick Barrett, Nick Beggs and Mel Collins and all is wrapped in a luscious veneer provided the London Session Orchestra (arrangements by Dave Stewart).
The epic tale recounted in this conceptual work largely invokes Celtic imagery and much (although certainly not all) of the music consequently has a distinctive Celtic resonance, and in this respect the contribution of Donockly’s Uilleann pipes and low whistles has been pivotal along with key orchestral instrumentation. However, at times the music rocks impressively, while at the other end of the scale, there are some true operatic moments, not least of which is ‘Il Tempo E Giunto’ voiced by Welsh tenor Meirion, and works very well in context.
Brief narration commences and concludes the album in what is, I think, supposed to be an Irish accent – but it’s a very strange one from my extensive travels around the Emerald Isles! ‘Exordium’ is, nevertheless, as the second longest track a tremendously effective opener, with interweaving themes. The initial appearance by Cothi is something of a shock but then we are introduced to the two main protagonists. I have not previously heard Brinn, but her sweet stylings suit the role she fulfils. Balsamo (Jesus Christ Superstar, The Storys, ChimpanA) is a vocalist of whom I am a huge fan, and when I first heard of his involvement in this new project knew that his distinctive vocal stylings, range and passionate delivery would doubtless be a completely magical component. I was not wrong! For a further eleven tracks, the story ebbs and flows, and is one of those albums where you really should listen in one go, and as the focus of what you are doing.
Do read my interview with Rob and Steve Reed in this magazine for further information about this outstanding album of “classic rock plus...” As the advert says, it reminds one of when music meant much more than just the click of a mouse!
Paul Jerome Smith

m.u.s.i.c. not music!

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SubjectViewsWritten ByPosted
Kompendium - Beneath the Waves 490 totobob 12/28/2012 03:55AM
Re: Kompendium - Beneath the Waves 176 pjs 12/28/2012 04:03AM
Re: Kompendium - Beneath the Waves 169 Burg 12/28/2012 05:13AM
Re: Kompendium - Beneath the Waves 182 rocknut 12/28/2012 06:20AM
Re: Kompendium - Beneath the Waves 146 Terry K. 12/28/2012 09:24AM
Re: Kompendium - Beneath the Waves 121 Carl1 12/28/2012 11:16AM
Re: Kompendium - Beneath the Waves 134 Terry K. 12/28/2012 11:46AM
Re: Kompendium - Beneath the Waves 136 Carl1 12/28/2012 12:30PM
Re: Kompendium - Beneath the Waves 113 Terry K. 12/29/2012 06:11AM
Re: Kompendium - Beneath the Waves 132 Idiosyncrasy 12/28/2012 10:06PM
Re: Kompendium - Beneath the Waves 117 Terry K. 12/29/2012 06:12AM
Re: Kompendium - Beneath the Waves 123 pjs 12/29/2012 06:23AM
Re: Kompendium - Beneath the Waves 124 totobob 12/28/2012 10:27PM
Re: Kompendium - Beneath the Waves145 pjs 12/28/2012 10:37PM
Re: Kompendium - Beneath the Waves 134 Carl1 12/28/2012 11:07PM
Re: Kompendium - Beneath the Waves 133 pjs 12/29/2012 12:53AM
Re: Kompendium - Beneath the Waves 106 Carl1 12/29/2012 01:22AM
Re: Kompendium - Beneath the Waves 125 pjs 12/29/2012 02:37AM


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