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Album Review

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The Pearl of Ever Changing Shell (featuring Jinian Wilde)
5

5

Stars

The Pearl of Ever Changing Shell (featuring Jinian Wilde)

Isildurs Bane

637

#

Sweden

Isildurs Bane's latest venture, "The Pearl of Ever Changing Shell," marks another interesting step in their evolution, this outing with the inclusion of Jinian Wilde's distinct vocals. The Swedish ensemble, known for their eclectic and sophisticated approach since their inception in 1976, continues to blur the boundaries between rock, jazz, and classical music. This album, following the well-received collaborations with Steve Hogarth and Peter Hammill (which can be heard in rotation at Prog Radio), showcases their commitment to musical innovation and exploration.

"The Pearl of Ever Changing Shell" is a thematic journey through the concept of change – an exploration of the external world's shifts mirrored by internal growth. The album's six tracks, span an ideal 46 minutes, showcase the band's orchestral prowess, with contributions from a diverse array of instruments including marimba, vibraphone, trumpet, and of course strings, creating a rich, layered sound. Jinian Wilde, known for his work with The David Cross Band, brings a new dimension to the ensemble, particularly in tracks like “Lifetimes,” adding a fresh vocal dynamic that I love and which complements the intricate compositions.

Isildurs Bane

Jinian Wilde, known for his work with The David Cross Band, brings a new dimension to the ensemble, particularly in tracks like “Lifetimes,” adding a fresh vocal dynamic that I love and which complements the intricate compositions.

Standout tracks like "Rise (Parts 1 & 2)" and “Sign of the Times" showcase the band's ability to fuse melancholic melodies with complex rhythms and textures. The musicianship is top-notch, with each member contributing to a cohesive sound that's both grandiose and intimate. The album's production, mixed by Charles Storm and mastered by Jan Severinsson, is polished, ensuring that each nuance and subtlety is captured with clarity.

"The Pearl of Ever Changing Shell" is a compelling addition to Isildurs Bane's discography, demonstrating their continued relevance in the progressive music scene. The album requires, and deserves, multiple listens to fully appreciate its depth and craftsmanship. Fans of the band and newcomers alike will find much to admire in this latest offering, which confirms Isildurs Bane's status as not just survivors but innovators in the ever-changing landscape of progressive music.

Tune in to Prog Radio to enjoy several tracks from this excellent record in our New Music rotation, and don’t miss “What’s New Proggy Cats?” to hear this and all the latest prog music.

5 Stars!

Released:
Run Time:
Highlights:
Reviewer:
Feb 23, 2024
46 min
Rise, Pt. 1 & 2 • Sign of the Times • Sailing Home • Lifetimes
Kevin Carmony
Buy/Stream:
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