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Wednesday, December 7, 2011

X-Panda - Flight of Fancy review

Year : 2011
Genre : Progressive Melodic Fusion
Label : X-Panda
Origin : Estonia
Rating : 9.8 / 10

Buy it now

Section below quoted from here.

"Band Biography:

X-Panda is a progressive rock and fusion band from Estonia. The band is known for their concerts full of emotion and power - pure pleasure for people who like to dream, imagine and feel. The music of X-Panda will move both experienced musicians and just music lovers, because it is full of surprises and mood changes, sounds, complex rhythms, rhythmic illusions, jazz fusion chord progressions and passages, heavy or cruel guitar riffs and all that altered with heroic film music theme-like melodies that one can sing along.  

X-Panda tries to expand their musical horizon and knowledge by creating technically and musically more entertaining music for themselves in the first place. The band was founded as a one time project for a song competition in april 2009. Founding members were Kaarel Tamra, Risto Virkhausen, Karl-Juhan Laanesaar and Liis Ring. They ended up winning the competition with a song "Linnukesed Siristavad". The feedback for such unusual music approach was extremely positive, so they decided to continue as a band. In August 2009, Tamar Nugis joined X-Panda, replacing Liis Ring on bass. X-Panda has won several competitions, including the title Noortebänd 2010, which is one of the two biggest band competitions held in Estonia. X-Panda has released their debut album Flight of Fancy which can be bought on www.cdbaby.com/cd/xpanda"

Section above from here.

X-Panda's debut full length is easily amidst the most profoundly positive audio experiences you could have this year, and it also marks the second time this diligently nihilistic music review site Noise Shaft ALMOST had to give maximum points at minimum - again. Luckily, I realized that the singing on this otherwise truly stunning LP is pretty "meh" grade, but, do not be afraid, as this is an instrumental spin first and foremost, and a truly amazing one for that. Flight of Fancy, for the most part, is a hyperstellar mindwarp project, and it contains only a little amount of vocal presence when witnessed as a full spin. The primer agenda of the release is that which the official band biography informs you of indeed, namely : to create music that the band members find uncompromisingly entertaining. The analogy of this - current - week emerges once again : to deliver with a clear conscience. Since you won't be given any chance to not-get-, let alone dismiss any part of this gigantic release as alibi, your best bet is to line up all your expectations at the wall, then start this LP and watch them evolve in real time.

It does not matter how finely calibrated your musical receivers are, they will be entertained thoroughly this time, as result of being graced with sonic data that is deliberately engineered with the delight of the positive snob in mind. The music that targets the delight of the positive snob, is not afraid to admit that it seeks to be appreciated, because it knows that all music seeks to be appreciated, no exception.

The reasons X-Panda's Flight of Fancy operates so efficiently, are numerous. One aspect I personally think is focal regarding its grandiose workings, is the fact that this album is not heavy at all. Even when it IS heavy(er), it is not a cumbersome liability to decipher, to spiritually endure, it instead remains clear as a window you can look through, only what you behold might be something more menacing than AH!, looksie, a viewtiful pink flower!. The soulful solo guitar work is an especially important component on the release, as you will often find your awareness tracing a solo since who-knows-how-long-it-has-been-really. These eloquent passages, though central elements, are never the only sights to behold, on the other hand. It is quite safe to say that each and every ingredient of the builds leads an autonomous life and enjoys a valid function in the sonic micro-economy. In titular track, "Flight of Fancy", - reminds one to Joe Satriani's "Flying in a Blue Dream" in character, I don't think accidentally - the fabric exhibits at least 7 complex chords at a simple turnaround, and the bass gives the comfy five for each one of them when they show up.

Music is supposed to be fun at the very least, and, once it is planned, composed and built this seriously and is given the meticulous amount of due work these levels and shapes demand by their mere nature, the results truly emerge as nothing sort of marvelous, beside remaining faithful to the state of still being fun at the core, as well. As noted, the vocals on the release are not too superb, - they are "interesting, you want to try again?" - but at least, there is not much of it on the LP. (It still is better than James LaBrie's horrendous slime rhetorics though, but far from the power and articulation of Anubis Gate's top notch Henrik Fevre, who is the Man in this clean mid-range emotional singing style.)

Yet, from an instrumental point of view, which is the essential attribute of this release, X-Panda's Flight of Fancy is an immediate variant on truly successful sci-fi music that emerges rampant while it consciously and wisely chooses to go easy on the ears. Obtaining a copy should be one of your top priorities, and, as such, the album also is recommended.

Rating : 9.8 / 10

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