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Senses — Fields Unsown
((Not on label) no#, 1996, CD)

by Peter Thelen, Published 1997-05-01

Fields Unsown Cover art

A New Jersey based four-piece led by vocalist / keyboardist / composer Joan Morbée, Senses' style falls in the category of somewhat folk-influenced acoustic sounds juxtaposed with harder-edged rock based influences. Morbée's voice ties the effort together nicely, sounding a bit like Jon Anderson with a huskier and deeper tone, though occasionally hitting the high registers of a Steve Perry. The album's six tracks are split evenly between a harder, more streamlined rock style (the even tracks), and a more lush and symphonic oriented approach (odd tracks, in particular the opener "Under the Weight of the Rain" and the ten-minute "In Light of the Moon / Reflection / High Tide"). The former are mostly song based, registering fairly low on the progmeter (yet the closer "Burn the Candle Down" straddles the band's stylistic poles), while the latter set extends well into the traditional prog idiom, with extended intros, non-traditional structures and metric changes aplenty. The use of piano and acoustic guitar opposite the driving rock passages recalls Renaissance to some extent, except the rock element here is a mite more simplistic and edgy. The electric guitar textures and solos are worthy of note, especially on the title track, occasionally reminiscent of Steve Howe. In all, this is a band to watch, they definitely seem to be going somewhere.

Filed under: New releases, Issue 12, 1996 releases

Related artist(s): Senses


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