Exposé Online banner

Advent — Advent
(Mellow MMP 311, 1996, CD)

by Paul Hightower, Published 1997-10-01

Advent Cover art

Advent is a New Jersey group led by the brothers Ptak, Henry and Mark, whose eponymous debut was actually released back in 1993 on cassette. Word steadily got around about Advent and this year the Italian Mellow label has opted to press the debut to CD. Advent fits in nicely with the newer wave of American prog bands like Discipline and Magellan in that they combine notable influences from the classic bands of the 70s, in this case Steve Hackett, Happy the Man, and Gentle Giant, with a modern sensibility that at time recalls better Alan Parsons. They eschew the harder, metal direction of many current American bands and instead create fanciful or whimsical mini-opuses, most in the four to six minute range but seemingly much fuller. The longest track, at over ten minutes, is "Alison Waits (A Ghost Story)," which is typical of what Advent do best, coupling rich and complex keyboard work to an assured vocal approach, including fine three part harmony work. Guitar comes in from time to time to provide spice to the otherwise tasty keyboard and vocal stew.

My complaints with the CD are that the keyboard sounds are often decidedly low-tech, as if the Ptaks were using cheap Casios and I found some of the drum machine passages annoying, especially when trying to approximate a military snare. Also, the production values are rather thin and threadbare, betraying the CDs home-brew tape (probably 4-track) origins. Even so, the freshness and power of the material overcomes the production shortcomings. Advent seem unabashedly happy to embrace some dangerously clichéd prog rock territory with a noticeably low-tech approach. But that they succeed only enhances the discÕs charm. Hopefully a follow up will find the Ptaks with a full band and better resources to do their music justice.


Filed under: New releases, Issue 13, 1996 releases

Related artist(s): Advent

Latest news

2019-11-07
Glenn Smith RIP – Glenn Smith, founder, mandolinist, and primary composer of the DeLand, Florida based prog / fusion band Magnatar, passed away on October 18th 2019 at the age of 68, after a brief illness.  » Read more

2019-11-04
Dino Brassea RIP – Word reaches us of the passing of Dino Brassea, who sang and played flute in Cast for many years. By our count, Brassea appeared on 11 Cast albums between 1994 and 2002. He also released music as a solo artist. » Read more

2019-10-06
Ginger Baker RIP – Legendary English drummer Ginger Baker has died at the age of 80. After coming to fame with Cream in the 60s alongside Eric Clapton and Jack Bruce, he became one of the most recognized and influential drummers of the rock era. On September 25, his family announced that he was critically ill, and on October 6 his death was confirmed. » Read more

2019-08-20
Alex's Hand Seeks Spa Treatment – American / European band Alex's Hand has a new album in the works called Hungarian Spa, which looks to be their biggest and best yet, featuring a large roster of guest musicians. They're seeking funding to take the project on the road, and are looking for help from the crowd of wisdom. » Read more

2019-06-05
Legendary Co-Founder of The 13th Floor Elevators Passes Away at Age 71 – Sadly, Roky Erickson passed away on May 31, 2019. Known as the father of psychedelic music and co-founder of the ground breaking 13th Floor Elevators, Roky had a profound influence on music from the 60s to today. Plagued by his own personal demons, Roky had a difficult life and is now free of these burdens. » Read more


Previously in Exposé...

Mind Furniture - Hoop of Flame – Mind Furniture, a Bay Area band recording their first CD in 2000, is Brett Barnett (keys), Bill Estes (guitars), Paul Harrison (bass), John Mabry (vocals and acoustic guitar), and Greg Miller (drums)....  (2008) » Read more



Listen & discover



Print issues