Steve Thorne, multi-instrumentalist and former session player for among others Jadis and IQ released his 6th solo album called Levelled (Emotional Creatures Part 3).
Thorne's new album contains 11 new tracks and all songs could be dubbed as neo progressive with poppy and AOR flavours. Bands that come to mind as I listen to Levelled are Pink Floyd, Ark, Genesis, Porcupine Tree (the quiet side...), Marillion, Fish, Peter Gabriel and even The Beatles... However, this does not mean that Thorne is just an ordinary prog rock copycat, no, on the contrary, he definitely has his own personal, beautiful style; just listen to the highlight of this album called He Who Pays The Piper. This song proves that Thorne is a truly great composer and musician, playing almost all (drums and lead guitar by Kyle Fenton and Geoff Lea) the instruments and singing dramatically well. Lyric-wise Thorne is again very critical as he deals with politics, governments, religion, environment and even history; just check out the “protest” songs World Salad Surgery, Psalm 2.0 and Monkey Business....
Levelled is another highlight in the career of the very talented Steve Thorne, but as a a guitar lover I have to say that I would have loved to hear a couple of more solos. This album is not always proggy enough for me personally. However, if you are a fan of Gabriel and Fish then Levelled is a MUST have album; listening tips: Word Salad Surgery (pure prog rock) and He Who Pays The Piper!!
**** Martien Koolen (edited by Dave Smith)
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