Madfish (Snapper Music) 2011
Review byReview by: Martien Koolen
Their previous album "Pure" was one of the musical highlights of the year 2008 and now Nick Barrett, Clive Nolan (Arena), Peter Gee and Scott Higham return with the new album "Passion". This album is filled with dark, mysterious songs, all with a harder rock edge and it takes a couple of spins to really appreciate this album. The CD opens with the title track, which is an up tempo prog rock song with typical Pendragon trade marks; however I truly miss a guitar solo..
The second track called: "Empathy" is an epic and clocks over 11 minutes and this is
probably the highlight of this album. A great, very diverse song with an addictive chorus, a cool melodic guitar solo and some really heavy, bombastic passages. Pendragon experiments a lot
on this track and ends this song with a lot of orchestration. "Feeding Frenzy" is the heaviest and most intense track of the album, but it is also a bit dull at certain times altought the track features a lot of riffs, hooks and nice vocals; unfortunately again no guitar solo!
The longest song on this album is called: "The Green And Pleasant Land" and this one is a real Pendragon song filled with those typical breathtaking melodies, lots of tempo changes, an instrumental diverse middle part and a rather weird end.
"It's A Matter of Not Getting Caught" is the shortest track on the album and it features a harp and a lot of sound effects; but all in all to me this is just a filler; nothing special really. "Skara Brae" is another melodic song filled with the distinctive guitar sound of Barrett, while the last track is again unfortunately rather mellow, tough the guitar solo at the end lifts this song to a higher level.
Conclusion: a great Pendragon album with only three excellent songs, so in my
opinion "Pure" was a lot better!
The DVD that comes along with the limited edition is really worth looking at as Nick
guides you through the entire recording process and tells a lot about the band and their music.
For fans of melodic prog rock "Passion" is a must!