Exposé Online banner

Tim Morse — Transformation
(Amethyst Empire 20131, 2005, CD)

by Paul Hightower, Published 2007-03-01

Transformation Cover art

Tim Morse is the author of Yesstories, a compilation of interviews from Yes band members past and present. One might therefore expect his debut CD to have Yes’s stamp on it, though this is surprisingly not the case. Instead, Morse — with his co-conspirators Mark Dean and Richie Zeller — has opted for a denser and harder musical road. Only the closing instrumental, “Ascension” (with its Andersonian spacy-ness), and Dean’s chunky bass playing hint at a Yes influence. The closest and easiest comparison I can make are to fellow northern Californians Magellan, who share this album’s predilection for dense, melodically angular and kinetic progressive rock. The songs at other times recall everyone from Saga to Cairo to Kansas. In other words, it’s a very American sounding album. Morse covers all of the keyboards, and he steers clear of analog or retro sounds, again perhaps wanting to avoid any Yes comparisons, though given the in-your-face stance of the material it’s nothing he need worry about. Though Morse’s name is on the front, Dean had a big hand in this album, playing most of the guitars, drums, and bass and co-authoring the songs. Guests contribute acoustic guitar, violin, and vocals, making for what feels like a communal effort, more than a mere solo project. Clearly a great deal of work and care has gone into this album and generally it succeeds, though for a follow up I’d like to hear what these musicians can do when they take their foot off the pedal.


Filed under: New releases, Issue 34, 2005 releases

Related artist(s): Tim Morse

Latest news

2017-04-16
ProgDay 2017 Announces First Bands – Flor de Loto, Sonar, and Infinien are the first three performers to be announced for the 2017 edition of the long-running ProgDay Festival. The 23rd ProgDay takes place Saturday and Sunday, September 2nd and 3rd, at Storybook Farm in Chapel Hill, North Carolina. » Read more

2017-04-16
Allan Holdsworth RIP – Surely in the list of artists who have contributed to the sound of modern music, there is a special spot for guitarist Allan Holdsworth. His name is known to virtually every student of the instrument in jazz and rock, and his style has been so widely emulated that it's hardly worth mentioning anymore — we can just assume that every guitarist has Holdsworth as an influence. » Read more

2017-02-20
Larry Coryell RIP – One of the greats of jazz guitar has left us at the age of 73. Larry Coryell was one of the founding figures of jazz fusion, but produced a significant body of work the bridged many styles. His group Eleventh House provided a unique take on the combination of jazz and rock that was distinct from contemporaries such as Mahavishnu Orchestra, Return to Forever, and Weather Report. » Read more

2017-01-31
John Wetton RIP – After a long battle with colon cancer, singer and bassist John Wetton has died at the age of 67. As an integral member of such bands as King Crimson, UK, and Asia, his was one of the distinctive voices in progressive rock, lending a human touch to often difficult music. » Read more

2017-01-30
Seaprog Announces First Artists for 2017 – The organizers of the Seaprog Festival in Seattle have announced the first set of confirmed performers for the 2017 festival. The best known names are Jack o' the Clock and Zero Times Everything, but a host of other bands are featured, mostly from the Northwest. The festival will take place June 2-4, 2017. » Read more


Previously in Exposé...

Providence - Rare Tracks – In their brief career, Providence only released one album, ...And I'll Recite an Old Myth From..., and graced at least one of MIJ's sampler discs. Their sound is a powerful neo-progressive blending...  (1993) » Read more



Listen & discover



Print issues