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torstai 18. toukokuuta 2017

Moonwagon - Devil's Labyrinth EP

Running Moose Productions / Presence Records (precd060)

Moonwagon is a progressive hard/psych/space rock band from Kokkola, Finland. The band has carried on as a trio after their synth player left before the third, a bit more jazz-rock-fusion styled album The Rule of Three (2015). All three members are multi-instrumentalists, so no problem in the studio. As influence they give out band names like Rush, Hawkwind, Pink Floyd, Yes, Genesis, Led Zeppelin, Black Sabbath. To my ears they are never too progressive, totally out-there psychedelic or really that heavy, but a good, pleasant and listenable, melodic mix of all those elements.

On this brand-new, professionally made CD-R EP they offer five interesting, mostly instrumental tracks. "Devil's Labyrinth" starts off the disc combining Rush-like hard rocking with some folk rock elements. I like for example the bass solo stuff as well as the cool keyboards and sort of airy, fresh vibe the track has. Definitely for Rush fans out there. "Haunted Hallways" is another great mid-tempo prog/hard rocker with also some more adventurous parts and again excellent playing by the band. Some of the synths towards the end bring to mind Eloy. Excellent! "Alchemy" is a nice, semi-acoustic folk rock piece with percussion and "Dus Aster" a shorter syntheziser piece a bit in the Tangerine Dream vein. My favourite by far is the groovy and hard rocking space rock number "South of Bermuda" that I have also used in my Astral Visions podcast. This one has some similarities with Hidria Spacefolk and Hawkwind so you bet I like it a lot! The track also has some vocals which is cool. I also love the guitar work especially on this track, a total winner! I look forward to see how the trio handles all the instrumentation live and tomorrow will be a perfect opportunity to find out since Moonwagon plays together with the superb prog rock band Malady at Semifinal in Helsinki.

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