The British project Breathing Space is no longer a project.† Itís a real band nowadays having a unique style with keyboardist and singer Iain Jennings and Olivia Sparnenn being the nucleus of the band. The line-up has completed by guitarist Liam Davison (Mostly Autumn), bassist Paul Teasdale, drummer Barry Cassells and second keyboardist Ben Jennings. Below The Radar is their third effort in three years after the excellent predecessors Iain Jennings Breathing Space (2006) and Coming Up For Air (2007).
Being both members of Mostly Autumn, Iain and Olivia have a lot of experience in writing good, fine-structured songs with a good melody and beautiful singing. However, the differences between Mostly Autumn and Breathing Space are evident. This time Iainís keyboards dominate the music instead of Brian Joshís guitar. Moreover, Mostly Autumnís music is affected by Pink Floyd and by traditional English folk music. However, two exceptions confirm the rule here: the title track Below The Radar is a good up-tempo song with a nice guitar riff. Drowning, one of the many highlights on this album contains alongside beautiful singing, a masterful guitar solo by Liam Davison. Questioning Eyes, the longest track, starts with Oliviaís singing accompanied by a cello played by guest musician Charlotte Scott. Slowly the song turns into a solid rock song with one acoustic and two electric guitar solos and finishing quietly with Olivia and a piano. Just like the bandís previous releases, this album contains some fine ballads like Lantern For A Smile and The Night Takes You Home. Run For Yourself is sung by Iain, who also has a pleasant voice.
Breathing Space made a very enjoyable album thatís worth listening too for all prog heads who like bands such as Mostly Autumn, Karnataka and The Reasoning. I hope they will be touring in The Netherlands soon, so we can see the band perform for a live audience. I certainly will be there.
**** Cor Smeets (edited by Peter Willemsen)
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