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Review of LIGHT FROM THE PLEIADES - page 1


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"... I never thought I’d write this about a Kevin Kendle album, but here goes. Light from the Pleiades, the third release in his Deep Skies series, sounds almost nothing like him! Oh sure, I can listen intently and say “Oh yeah, that keyboard is familiar” or “That’s the kind of melody he’s known for.” And yes, Brian Abbott’s glissando guitar still appears at times (less so than on the other two CDs). However, if I had to sum up my reaction to this album (besides “Wow, this is great!”) I’d write something like “Kevin Kendle goes to Berlin via the spaceport.” Now, I’m not going to tell you this is THAT close to what the current Germanic sequencer artists are up to these days, but at times it’s not far off. Kevin has apparently fallen head over heels in love with sequencers, moogs, and his ARP synthesizer. He integrates these retro EM elements into contemporary spacemusic so that this music also can be compared to folks like Jonn Serrie (specifically Flightpath), Geodesium, Steve Verity or Enterphase, to name a few. However, Kevin’s latest CD is still undeniably unique. While you may hear echoes or strains of other artists, this is new and exciting music and it’s also far and away the best release in the Deep Skies series (and ranks up there with the best from this artist, period).

With only seven tracks on the album (named for the seven stars which make up the titular astronomical object), you can guess that song length tends to be on the longer side. Only one track is under seven minutes and “Asterope (Night Sky Music)” is a few ticks over thirteen. “Dance of Electra” kicks off the album literally; it’s a dramatic and energizing number with a quiet prelude before a sequenced rhythm emerges amidst chorals, glissando guitar, and some subtly blistering lead guitar lines. Yeah, who’d a thunk it? Stinging electric guitar licks on a Kevin Kendle recording! Power chords rip the night sky apart on top of the undercurrent pulsing beats and synthesizer tones. The song just keeps on building, reaching a celestial orgasm of sorts before slowly winding down.

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