Everyone likes to get (non-ticking) packages in the mail. Every so often I arrive home to find an unexpected tan package with my name on it and free music inside. It used to be that a lot of companies would send me their albums but these days that I'm not as aggressively reviewing music there are only a few who send me albums for review. One of these that still sends me music is Inside Out Music, a label that specializes in progressive rock music.
Such was the case yesterday.
Three albums forming a mixed bag. The most promising is The Hemulic Voluntary Band by Ritual, a Swedish group who really, really love the earth. But the delivery is coated in effusive melodies and organic instrumentation (in addition to the usual rock stuff there's piano and flutes and pan flutes and other pastoral flotsam) and dramatic Freddie Mercy-like vocals that make the icky medicine go down easier. And to be honest, by Al Gore/Unabomber standards they are barely environmentalists. I really enjoyed their first two albums and so hope to enjoy this one.
Also included was an album by Riverside whose first album sounded like modern radio gaga. It gets one listen and if it fails to grab me, it's gone.
Last is the newest by The Flower Kings. Lots of bands I like love this band but despite repeated listens to many of their albums over the years... nothing. I don't have high hopes for this one either but it will get one, maybe two listens before being stacked neatly away in storage with Riverside.
One out of three ain't bad!