Tuesday, February 17, 2015

Sylvan "Home"

Country: Germany
Genre(s)Progressive Rock
LabelGentle Art of Music
Format: CD, vinyl
Release dates: February 17, 2015 (US), February 20, 2015 (Europe)
1. Not Far From the Sky (6:30)
2. Shaped Out of Clouds (6:02)
3. In Between (10:50)
4. With the Eyes of a Child (4:19)
5. Black and White (7:14)
6. The Sound of Her World (9:23)
7. Sleep Tight (5:31)
8. Off Her Hands (3:42)
9. Shine (6:18)
10. Point of No Return (5:25)
11. All These Years (5:40)
12. Home (6:05)

Marco Glühmann - vocals
Matthias Harder - drums
Sebastian Harnack - bass
Volker Söhl - keyboards
Jonathan Beck - guitar

With Home, for the first time since their critically acclaimed Posthumous Silence of 2006 Sylvan have taken the chance to create another full-on concept album. Even though the Hamburg natives attach great importance to creating contextually comprehensive pieces of art with any of their albums, this time around Sylvan have upped their ambition another notch and taken on the mammoth task of building an overall concept around the never ending quest of the human condition for “home” – that very special place that can provide a feeling of complete safety.
In order to live up to the task, Sylvan have worked out a lyrical concept that tells the story of the rediscovery of the record’s protagonist’s long-forgotten childhood memories and how that way a hostile world reveals itself to her bit by bit – a world of no hope and no home. That is how the past collides with the future in today’s world and inevitably raises the question: how can one actually find that special place that is capable of conveying that feeling of safety? Consequently a maze composed of worries, doubts and fears ensues and creates the confusion that indeed does trigger the protagonist to go and seek the truth. Once found, however, the new discovery threatens to make the pillars of her world view collapse. What decision will she make?
With regards to the artistic concept, Sylvan have once again created a full blown musical extravaganza of all kinds of different styles; a remarkable piece that does not only captivate listeners through its sheer catchiness and touching emotionality, but simultaneously manages to impress with an awe-inspiring degree of complexity. Home has a dense structure, full of emotionality. Still, despite roaring elements of intense aggressiveness, the album neither loses the elegance nor the spherical sound that have always defined Sylvan. Using said creative tools, Sylvan have managed to record pieces that are not only characterized by the majestic grandness and dramatic energy of the music, but also incorporate the band’s intellectually sophisticated approach into the overall concept, which ultimately makes for a fascinating experience for all senses.

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