Deep Thought

a progressive rock adventure

Reviews - Shadows of the past

Juriaan's Axiom of Choice

Juriaan Hage

Summary of history

An unknown band from Basel, Switzerland with their home produced demo cd.

The album

Three songs and two short edits (of the first two) on this album. The title track opens dark and moody with keyboards and low, melodic vocals. Then the music burst loose with a psychedelic guitar. Notwithstanding the music tends to stay melodic and somewhat easygoing. My biggest problem with the song is that the singing does not convey any emotion, it's all a bit too much concentrated on getting the melody right and seemingly not on conveying some kind of emotion or anything. The dark chords and also the acoustic guitar in the middle are quite alright. Musically the band has similarities to a new band such as Triangle, but still there's some expressiveness lacking in the especially the vocal rendition. Still the composition is quite nice. The opening of Ice is not very appealling. The lyrics are a bit trite (notwithstanding being true) and the melodic passage that follows does liven the song up a bit, but not as much as it could have. A more powerful sound is needed here. I like the waltzing melody that is the bridge to the vocal part again. The intermezzo is a bit laid back with acoustic guitar, soft keyboards, but at some point the pace goes up dramatically with a keyboard solo. Here, as more often is the case, a lack of good production is felt. As always this is most strongly felt in the recording of the vocals and in this case the drums. I've been told this is usually due to having a less than perfect microphone. Still I like the composition less than its predecessor, especially the first vocal part is weak. The third track and one might say the final one, is Simple Man. Some definite Marillion echoes in here (the frolic keyboards after the first vocal part). The song takes its time getting under way here. The vocal parts are at times a bit wavery and the lyrics sound to me a bit articificial. The bridge part (slightly past the 7 minute mark) sounds quite original and moves right into a part with military drums and mellotronish keyboards. Out of the keyboards comes the acoustic guitar and the final vocal part.

It seems in retrospect that the band feels most at home in the title track of which we find a 4 minute edit. The guitar work spices it song up a bit and the vocals are alright, bordering on jazzy at times. The final track is the short edit of Ice. I wasn't that fond of this track and now they cut of most of the parts that were okay. I like the way it ends though (and like I said earlier the waltz like transition).


This band has a distance to go, if my opinion is worth anything. Productionally we have the usual problems that money and more experience will certainly solve (drums and vocals) and also a more full sound would be advisable. However the music is essentially rather laid back and eruptions are certainly not the rule. Compositionally I thought the title track was well structured, but this does not hold for Ice. Some of the parts are much too weak here and more attention should be given them. This especially holds for the first vocal part, which sounds a bit too easy. Another point of criticism is for the lyrics. Although I'm not a native English speaker or writer myself, the lyrics sound too artificial to my ears. Another way would be to put less an emphasis on the vocals.