Credo - Rhetoric

(CD 2005, 69:38, F2 Music 200509)

The tracks:
1- Skintrade(06:52)
2- Turn The Gun(06:54)
3- From The Cradle...(07:25)
4- ...To the grave(11:53)
5- The Letter(07:45)
6- The Game(11:39)
7- Too Late...(06:46)
8- ...To say goodbye(04:41)
9- Seems Like Yesterday(05:40)

Credo Website        samples        F2 Music

My favourite album of 1999 was The Services Of Mary Goode recorded by the British progressive rock band Janison Edge. On that album, the keyboard playing was excellent done by Mike Varty . At that time, he also played in Clive Nolan’s Shadowland, but unfortunately, we never heard of both bands and Mike Varty ever after. In 2005 however, Mike joined Landmarq. Great news, indeed, but the news that Credo recorded a new album was even bigger. I knew that Mike Varty had joined this band a few years earlier. In 1994, I listened to their debut album Field Of Vision in a record store. Unfortunately, I did not recognize the talents of Mike Varty on that album, so I left the store without buying the album. In my opninion, the music was rather mediocre. Their second album Rhetoric, however, cannot be compared to the debut album. Right from the start The Services Of Mary Goode came to my mind. It contained the same high level of neo-prog rock the best way possible. Music that you may compare to the music made by bands like Pendragon, Arena,   Shadowland and early Marillion. Bass player Ian Salmon from Arena and guitar player on The Services Of Mary Goode, told me that it took Credo six years to record Rhetoric . However, this long period of waiting was well worthwhile. Looking at the credits in the booklet it becomes clear that Credo could not have made this album without Mike Varty. He did not only co-write and arrange the songs, but he also co-produced the record. Mike even engineered and mastered the album at his Gargoyle Studio. Another important man on the album is Karl Groom ( Threshold / Shadowland ). He did an excellent job by engineering the drums and mixing the album at the Thin Ice Studio, but we must not forget the other band members who lifted Credo’s music to a very high level. Singer Mark Collen has a strong and expressive voice while guitarist Tim Birrell knows how to play a tasteful solo. Bass player Jim Murdoch and drummer Martin Meads must have spend a lot of time together, because the bass line and the drum beats sound very solid. It is no use to mention every song on the album, because I cannot find any weak spot on Rhetoric. All songs have the same high level. However, there are two twin tracks I have to mention. From the cradle…/…To the grave and Too late…/…To say goodbye are both very cleverly done. Both tracks start very slowly and end up in an up-tempo climax. Bravo! It shows that we deal with a very professional band. I hope that it does not take another eleven years before Credo releases the next album. That would be a crime for all fans of great neo prog music. In my opinion, Rhetoric is one of the best albums of 2005.

****+ Henri Strik (edited by Peter Willemsen)

Credo Concert Review 8-May-09        Credo DVD review

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