Ulysses — Neronia
(Musea Pyramusic PYRCD 1001, 1993, CD)
by Peter Thelen, Published 1994-08-01
A German five piece, Ulysses play a neo-prog style that is far more interesting than most. Lyrically ambitious, they occasionally remind of Twelfth Night, although their style gravitates more toward modern stylings. The album also features vocals by Tracy Hitchings on a couple tracks, and production by Clive Nolan and Karl Groom, all mainstays of the SI Camp. Vocalist Gerard Hynes carries hardly a trace of accent; his English lyrics are clear and very understandable, although he's stretching the limits at times a-la-Nick Barrett. The band has no problem firing it up on their instrumental breaks (as on "Teenage Sweethearts,” "Mistinguett,” and "Days Gone By"), but when backing Hynes or on the shorter tracks, they play it close to the safe zone. The material is all group written, lyrics mostly by Hynes, with three of the album's eight tracks clocking in at ten minutes or longer; they handle these lengthier tunes respectably, with enough changes and mood shifts to keep them interesting over the long haul. All taken, this is a very impressive debut from a band that has a lot of potential. Distributed by Musea.
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
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
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
Tomasz Stańko RIP – Tomasz Stańko, one of the greats of Eastern European jazz, has died at the age of 76. Stańko's career started in Krzysztof Komeda's quintet, where he contributed trumpet from 1963-1967, when he formed his own group. He worked extensively with Edward Vesala, Don Cherry, Zbigniew Seifert, Chico Freeman, Howard Johnson, Cecil Taylor, and many others. Many of his recordings have been released by ECM, an association that began in the mid-70s. » Read more