Exposé Online banner

November — The First of November
(SI Music Simply 59, 1994, CD)

by Peter Thelen, Published 1995-03-01

The First of November Cover artThirty seconds into the first cut you'll swear you're listening to some lost Peter Gabriel album from around 1980. This track, "Africa, Where Are You," has all of the phrasing and style down pat, complete with percussion and vocal style. It's not until the second track that you are reassured with more of the typical neo-progressive sounds that one might expect from a Dutch four-piece on said label — recalling elements of all of the usual people: Marillion, IQ, Jadis, Landmarq and the rest — you know 'em all. Successive tracks blend these two basic elements (neo-prog and Security-era Gabriel) into a more commercial style that is in fact quite good for what it is. Aside from the obvious lack of originality that plagues most of this kind of music, the songs are very well written and arranged, with bright melodic passages, clean keyboard solos, an occasional syncopated beat, and minimal instrumental clutter, all fronted by Karel Messemaker's confident vocals. Most of the music here is radio-ready pop, full of hooks and catchy melodies — certainly not prog, yet if all pop was this well done I might turn on the radio more often. November is too stylistically incestuous to call original, yet the music still asserts its strength and shines through this weakness on better tracks like "The Pilgrim," "Clown's Overture," or "Lion Eyes." Overall, for neo/pop — and especially for a first album, this is a pretty good effort. Recommended for fans of Jadis, Egdon Heath, Sinister Street, Pallas, and the like.

Filed under: New releases, Issue 6, 1994 releases

Related artist(s): November

Latest news

2018-02-15
10 Years of Fruits de Mer - The Incomplete Angler – Those of you who are faithful followers of Exposé will know that we have been promoting Fruits de Mer and its side labels and releases from nearly its first year. Now music journalist and author Dave Thompson has written a book chronicling the past ten years as a celebration of this milestone. » Read more

2018-02-14
Tom Rapp RIP – Singer / songwriter Tom Rapp, best known with the band Pearls Before Swine, passed away on February 12, at the age of 70, after a battle with cancer. » Read more

2018-01-30
Bill Bruford Ventures into Uncharted Territory – Drum master Bill Bruford, veteran of some of the most creative bands in history (King Crimson, Yes, Genese, etc.), is sharing some of what he's learned about being a drummer and a musician in his new book, Uncharted: Creativity and the Expert Drummer, out on University of Michigan Press. » Read more

2018-01-18
Christian Burchard RIP – Multi-instrumentalist Christian Burchard, who founded the seminal band Embryo in 1969, has died at the age of 71. His January 17 passing was announced on the band's Facebook page. » Read more

2018-01-05
Ray Thomas RIP – On Thursday, 4 January 2017, the world lost Ray Thomas, founding member of the Moody Blues. Thomas sang and played flute, and was responsible for writing a number of the band's most memorable songs. He was 76. » Read more


Previously in Exposé...

Happy Rhodes - Many Worlds Are Born Tonight – Happy Rhodes is now at her eighth studio album, and it is her first to be released on a label other than her own Aural Gratification. Not that signing with Samson is exactly a move to the majors. This...  (1999) » Read more



Listen & discover



Print issues