The Dutch band Argus, named after the successful album of Wishbone Ash, released their debut album Tell Me (see review) in 2016 and colleague Iris Hidding was not really impressed with it....
Now five years later Argus releases their sophomore album called The Outsider and I can say that this is a far improvement mainly due to the fact that the compositions are better structured and composed. The Outsider contains six new songs and all of them clock over seven minutes, so these are really epics containing influences from notorious bands like King Crimson, Pink Floyd, Camel and Kansas.
The album opener Depressed is filled with piano and keyboard themes and melodies while the guitar theme and solo contain some truly Floydish sounding elements. Follow up Some Time shows some more up-tempo passages while the guitar solo is again a beauty and very melodic. The title track has a Marillion vibe and Visions contains a Shine On You Crazy Diamond sounding hook while Lost Girl is a ballad-like track. Musically all the songs really sound excellent and diverse, but I have to say that the vocals of keyboard player Frans Nooijen really are too monotonous throughout the entire album.
However, if you like prog rock music of the seventies with lots of melodic guitar solos, then The Outsider is a great addition to your music collection. Try it, listening tip: the title track.
*** Martien Koolen (edited by Dave Smith)
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