sábado, 29 de abril de 2017

KNIGHT AREA Neo-Prog • Netherlands


It may sound odd, but KNIGHT AREA have been an entity for around 20 years; however, 2004 was when people started to really hear and understand them as a band. 

Gerben Klazinga, the primary creative force of the band, almost single handedly put together what would be KNIGHT AREA'S debut, The Sun Also Rises. The time until 2003, he operated with a variety of musicians to sort out his musical ideas. Mark Smit (MIRACLE) carried out the leading vocals, Peter van Heijningen and Jeroen Hogenboom (ex-SANGAMO) played the (lead) guitars and Ron van der Bas (what's in a name) from Toyz and the Rickenbacker-wizard Gijs Koopman (ex-CLIFFHANGER) performed the bass parts. Mark van Nieuwenhuizen (ex-SANGAMO) carried out some drum parts. Musical mates like Vincent Frijdal for the acoustic guitar parts and Arjan Groenendijk for the power chord parts helped out in constructing the basic arrangements. Stephanie Lagrande as well donated her talents to the album. Brother Joop is also present with his flute, lyrics and some co-production labor. A concept centering around a boy who is in search for his identity (to some extent an autobiographical saga). Experiences are abundant with a few trials and tribulations; nevertheless he succeeds in discovering a vigorous way to cope with his emotions. The debut was met with overwhelmingly positive reviews, thus the band began on a very positive note and even rewarded them with an invite to Nearfest in 2005.

Rather than being essentially a one-man project, the main change to note on this sophomore effort, Under A New Sign, is that KNIGHT AREA are now a 'proper' seven-piece band; this obviously helps give a sense of cohesiveness to proceedings, as well as making it possible for the band to establish themselves as a live act. Carrying on in the spirit of the debut, Under A New Sign (2007) possesses the classic neo progressive characteristics that pays homage to mainstays like Pendragon and IQ. Lush keyboards, whirling song structures that reminds one of 70's Kansas at times, KNIGHT AREA not only did not disappoint, but probably won over new fans and promises to keep producing consistent neo prog that one day could have them mentioned in the same breath with legends of the subgenre.

Eric Walker


Valeu Magal

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