Exposé Online banner

Episode — Starlight Tales
(Alabaster Communications ALB 37330-1, 1993, CD)

by Mike Borella, Published 1994-02-01

Starlight Tales Cover art

I've been listening to Episode for quite a while and patiently awaiting this disc. They live in the Bay Area, so I see them around at shows, and have been asking them for the last year and a half about when this disc was coming out. For this reason, and the fact that I do enjoy some of their earlier music quite a bit, it is painful to write this review. Yes, Starlight Tales is progressive rock, and has a couple of good moments. However, the disc is 65 minutes long and the good moments get swallowed by too many average ones. Episode approaches progressive rock with Yes and Floydian influences, but lose much of their "progressive-ness" by trying to be accessible. Their talent is wasted on the pop-song structures and simplicity that plague most of the shorter tracks on this disc. The second track, "Grey Matters," and the fourth, "Pinnacles," are examples of this – songs that would fit MTV circa 1985. The production leaves much to be desired, as it buries Tom Finch's guitar from most of the tracks. Drummer Gary Scheuenstuhl, keyboardist Nick Peck, and bassist Don Tyler are accomplished players of their respective instruments, but don't display their skills well enough to warrant their share of the mix. Overall, the band's songwriting has improved over their amateurish debut cassette, but has few strong moments. One of them is the track "Edge of the Sky," a 15-minute masterpiece in the classic symphonic vein, which was originally released in 1991. Excellent. "Hesperantes Rising," a 24-minute piece, shows some promise but the rest of the disc is mediocre pop-prog at best. The vocals, shared by all members but revolving around Roe Tyler and Nick Peck, tend to turn some people off. They are a bit weak, but I don't find them as intrusive as some do. Episode has committed the cardinal sin of not playing at least close to the limits of their abilities. As a result, this very promising, talented band has yielded a weak release. I still feel they have tremendous untapped potential, but I seriously doubt that we'll ever hear it.


Filed under: New releases, Issue 2, 1993 releases

Related artist(s): Episode

Latest news

2021-02-14
SoundQuest Fest 2021 – SoundQuest Fest, first experienced as a live festival in Tucson Arizona in 2010 was created by ambient music pioneer Steve Roach. This 2021 event will unite a worldwide gathering of artists and audience members together for a 3-day online event unique in the realm of ambient music. From March 26-28th a continuous flow of streamed performances, audio-video wonder worlds and deep immersion zones will burn bright on Roach’s YouTube channel. » Read more

2021-02-10
Chick Corea RIP – The sad news has reached us that Chick Corea has Returned to Forever, so to speak. The innovative keyboardist and composer died on February 9 at the age of 79. With a career that spanned from the 60s until shortly before his death, Corea touched many listeners with the incredible variety of music he produced in his lifetime. » Read more

2021-01-18
Asia Minor Third Album on the Way – On January 29, AMS records will be releasing the long-awaited third album by classic Turkish-French band Asia Minor. Released last year in Japan, this will be the widespread debut of Points of Libration. The album features original members Setrak Bakirel (vocals, guitar) and Eril Tekeli (flute, guitar). » Read more

2020-12-09
Harold Budd RIP – Harold Budd, one of pre-eminent American composers of avant-garde and minimalism, has died of complications from the coronavirus. Budd came to prominence in the 70s, championed by Brian Eno on his Obscure Records label, with music that blended academic minimalism with electric jazz and electronic music. Much of Budd's best known work was done in collaboration with other artists, including Eno, Daniel Lanois, Robin Guthrie, Andy Partridge, John Foxx, Jah Wobble, and many others. » Read more

2020-11-20
25 Views of Worthing Finally Gets Released – A while ago, we wrote about the discovery of a "long lost" Canterbury-style gem by a band called 25 Views of Worthing. And now we're pleased to find out that Wind Waker Records has released their music on an LP. » Read more


Previously in Exposé...

Ground Zero - Consume Red – One could say without stretching the truth too far, that Consume Red (part one of the three part Project Consume) is basically an hour of pure thrash / noise experimentation, delivered piping hot by...  (1999) » Read more



Listen & discover



Print issues