Moongarden — Brainstorm of Emptiness
(Mellow MMP 284, 1996, CD)
by Mike McLatchey, Published 1997-02-01
Genesis and Van der Graaf Generator were very popular in Italy in the mid-70s. While nowadays you can't sell out a 1,000 seater at Progfest in the USA, bands such as these were hot sellers in Italy, playing to crowds of several tens of thousands and more. And of course these two bands are about 90% responsible in inspiration for a swath of new Italian groups in the progressive vein, Moongarden certainly being one of them. While many groups with this influence keep the inspiration to the vocals and lyrics only (every time I hear an Italian singing in English like Peter Gabriel...) Moongarden fortunately retain the more symphonic rock moves as well. I've heard so many bands like this from Italy in the last year that it's getting easy to be confused. Moongarden stands out as being quite interesting due to their mostly ever changing song structures, yet the overall effect leaves me thinking of what early Marillion would sound like with more complexity and more filler. At times this stuff can be quite inspiring, but often some excellent weird staggered section will empty into an awkward vocal chorus and I again forget who I am listening to. So it's probably worth a listen, especially for neo-progressive fans who are comfortable with the Fish / Gabriel / Hammill vocalist styles and gravitate to the more complex end of the spectrum. I'm still not sure what I think.
Related artist(s): Moongarden
Soft Machine Set to Release New Music – It's been 50 years since The Soft Machine changed the face of music with their first album. Their blend of psychedelic rock and jazz was unique, and while the band went through many changes before disbanding in 1981 — by which time there were no original members remaining — they remained an innovative force with a style all their own. » Read more
7d Surfaces Happy Rhodes Back Catalog – We've covered singer Happy Rhodes before, both for her solo work and recently with The Security Project, but her 11 albums have been hard to track down. Until now. 7d features high-quality downloads of all her releases, and several of them are also available on CD. » Read more
Fred Chalenor RIP – We have news of another sad passing in the world of creative music. Bassist Fred Chalenor, whose creativity featured on albums by Tone Dogs, Caveman Shoestore, and many more, died on June 23, 2018 after a long battle with Alzheimer's. Tributes have poured in from the many musicians and fans whose lives he touched. » Read more