Tuesday, September 24, 2013

CRYSTAL PALACE: "The Systems Of Events"

Rating: RRR
Label: GentleArtOfMusic 2013
Review by: Urban "Wally" Wallstrom

Finally back at the top and Premier League - the entire team decides to record a spanking new album. Kevin Philips howls like an old geezer forever stuck on the bench. Jedinak kicks everything that moves at the halfway line. Speroni collects another ball in the net, and Chamakh is forever the useless gunner at the centre of the stage. No... wait... what? It's not Crystal Palace? But Crystal Palace from Germany - the Progressive Rock band with at least five other albums in their back catalogue. Well smoke me a kipper if I'm not a complete smeg-head (Red Dwarf- UK comedy series -nevermind).

On their latest album, "The System Of Events", the Berlin quartet takes on the big question is there a formula to our lives and what's the correct answer? The eight tracks on display deals with everything from how people are forced to adapt to new circumstances after disasterous killing sprees to coping with personal grief after the death of a close relative.

It's soft atmospheric prog-rock that has emerged from the likes of Genesis, Marillion, IQ, and the dreamy landscape of Porcupine Tree. Very pretentious and posh and quite the intriguing story of hope and fate. The vocals reminded me of the Swedish anti-heroes of Hanson Wolf United and the spacey keyboards are mesmerizing to say the least (simply check out the ending of Beautiful Nightmare). Extremely well played and executed but never quite as interesting as their fellow label mates of RPWL. Yogi Lang and Kalle Wallner (RPWL) and Colin Edwin (Porcupine Tree) are all guest musicians and combined with the determination of the team, ehh, band, these chaps are more than capable of staying at the premier league.

Bottomline. Very solid and not to be ignored if you're the massive prog fan. Did they not once have the bald eagle from Sampdoria and The Swedish meatball as their manager and comic sidekick? No, wait, that's the London football team again? Blimey, this is difficult...

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