Exposé Online banner

The Aaron Clift Experiment — If All Goes Wrong
((Not on label) MUSI-00005, 2018, CD)

by Henry Schneider, Published 2018-07-22

If All Goes Wrong Cover art

The third time is the charm, especially for Aaron Clift and his cohorts. I delayed gratification for three months to listen to their new album If All Goes Wrong as I worked through my review queue. And I am very pleased to say that the wait was worth it in every aspect! If All Goes Wrong has a less personal sound than the first two, with the music showing a mature band stretching their muscles and enjoying the music, plus presenting Aaron’s grittier side. Overall, the music is very different from Lonely Hills and Outer LIght, Inner Darkness. The album opens with “Faith,” a gritty metal prog song with strong gutsy guitar work. “Last Crash” is a harsh metal rock song with melodic vocal harmonies that go through many complex changes. Next is “Absent Lovers,” a beautiful bucolic pastorale complete with violin, viola, cello, and classical guitar reminiscent of Peter Gabriel, Genesis, and Steve Hackett compositions giving the song a 70s Euro Prog flavor, plus a sense of Shakespeare. Aaron then goes in a brand new direction with “Better off Before,” a British psych-pop music hall song, kind of a blend of Queen and The Beatles. Next is “Castle in the Sky” that offers up some more melodic metal prog and tempo shifts. Then, gaining confidence in their sound, is the dark and grungy “Savage in a Fancy Suit” recalling early Black Sabbath and morphing into a fantastic organ and guitar jam. The album just gets better as you move to “Dream within a Dream,” which is an original song, not a cover of Sprit's song from the 60s. Aaron’s song is a polished composition with a smooth, soaring guitar solo that links to their past work. Next is the arena rock “Wild Hunters” that should propel them to a much larger audience. When I finally reached the title track, I was blown away. The fantastic lush Mellotron intro had me on my knees and the song pays homage to Robert Fripp’s “In the Court of the Crimson King.” And the closing song “Back to the Water” is a bonus track that is an introspective ballad consisting solely of Aaron’s vocals and piano. If All Goes Wrong is certainly one of the best releases this year, and it makes their first two releases pale in comparison. Any fan of modern progressive rock should make every effort to track down a copy of If All Goes Wrong.


Filed under: New releases, 2018 releases

Related artist(s): Aaron Clift

More info
http://www.aaronclift.com/product/if-all-goes-wrong

Latest news

2018-11-02
Charles O'Meara (C.W. Vrtacek) RIP – A true musical original has left us. Charles O'Meara, who recorded under the name C.W. Vrtacek, was a wild-card musical talent, ranging from complex progressive rock to introspective modern compositions, with stops at many places inbetween. » Read more

2018-10-17
Eurock Documentary Seeks Funding – We've been fans and fellow travelers with Archie Patterson and his Eurock project on the journey to discover great music. After many years of promoting and trying to spread the word,a new phase is beginning: a documentary film. Things like this don't just happen, and money does not magically appear to make it happen, so it's up to the fans to get it done. » Read more

2018-09-29
Marty Balin RIP – One of the architects of the 60s psychedelic sound of San Francisco has died at the age of 76. Marty Balin was a singer, songwriter, and guitarist who was one of the founders of Jefferson Airplane. After the split of the original Airplane, Balin went on to form the highly successful Jefferson Starship. » Read more

2018-09-25
Help the Psychic Equalizer Avoid Extinction – Last year we reviewed the debut album by Psychic Equalizer, a musical project of Hugo Selles. He's now working on the ambitious follow-up to that release, and is seeking funding from listeners around the world. » Read more

2018-09-05
Krautrock Documentary Seeks Funding – The next installment of the Progressive Warriors documentary series will focus on the vast body of music that falls under the banner of "krautrock." As most of our readers will know, previous films have tackled RIO and the Canterbury scene, as well as what we might call "mainstream" prog rock. » Read more


Previously in Exposé...

Frameshift - An Absence of Empathy – Within the network of hard rock musicians there are plenty of opportunities for various players to meet, establish a working partnership and make some new music. Sebastian Bach (former lead singer of...  (2006) » Read more



Listen & discover



Print issues