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""Seasons" combine ambient rock, new age, progressive and heavy metal with a rather success."
DARIALYS - 05.11.2019 -
Forest Field is an international music project based in the Netherlands. The formation is based on a well-trained duo. On the one hand, Peter Cox, Chinawhite's guitarist, composes the songs, writes the lyrics and plays all the instruments, in addition to providing some choirs. At the microphone, Phil Vincent is the one who operates, for lead vocals and choirs. After a short break, Cox and Vincent are back with a fifth album, "Seasons".

The band defines itself as an "elaborate" rock band. Under this mysterious term, the duo declares to combine ambient rock, new age and progressive. And if the two men do not mention the influence of heavy metal in their compositions, this musical style is nevertheless and certainly the most represented on the album, through songs like "Into The Lions Den", "Autumn Sky" or "Trading Places". The hard rock atmospheres of the 80's are relatively frequent too, as on the verses of "Eyewitness" which would even remind us of Scorpions. Forest Field also wrote more rock songs, such as the single "Change The World", whose well found chorus reminds us of Flying Colors.

The diversity of writing is a success on this album, relatively well balanced in terms of influences. In the middle of the disc, for example, is 'Rain In May', a song whose first minutes begin with vocals, cello and guitar, in a very calm minimalist format. And whatever the style played, voices often play an important role on this album. Polyphony is well brought and used in the right way at the high points of the songs and reinforces the musicality of the titles, as on the chorus of "Storm In November".

If the quality of the compositions is real, a certain amateurism comes to taint the global rendering. Beyond the cover with its kitschy colours, the production is not very elaborate. This is all the more remarkable on tracks where Peter Cox's crunchy guitar sounds, such as on 'Spring Is Coming','A Silent Cry', or on 'Eyewitness', leaving room for a rather vague and confusing rendering, where the boundaries of each instrument seem blurry. You might even hear a bad collage of tracks with a short break of a few tenths of a second in the middle of 'Change The World', while the sounds at the beginning of 'Storm In November' seem to come straight from the Guitar Pro software.

Beyond these technical considerations, some artistic choices seem unwise, or at least questionable, especially on instrumental pieces. 'Spring Is Coming', for example, presents a long 4-minute guitar solo, whereas this song could have been a simple 1-minute or 2-minute section by integrating it with another title. The same goes for 'Circles', another instrumental piece built as if it were sung and sounded like a track from which the lyrics had been removed, creating a feeling of monotony without real instrumental developments.

"Seasons" is therefore an album that borrows its sounds from many musical styles, corresponding well to the leitmotiv of the duo, which declares that it does not set itself any limits in terms of writing. Let us now hope that the band will improve the quality of the production of its next albums in order to further enhance the quality of its compositions.

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01. Delta Hours - 4:34
02. Change The World - 5:45
03. Spring Is Coming - 4:13
04. Into the Lion's Den - 5:43
05. Rain In May - 5:04
06. Eyewitness - 5:52
07. Circles - 4:03
08. A Silent Cry - 6:11
09. Autumn Sky - 4:32
10. Trading Places - 6:00
11. Storm In November - 7:32
12. On The Edge Of Winter - 3:35


Peter Cox: Guitares / Basse / Claviers / Batterie
Phil Vincent: Chant
Vince O’regan: Guitares / Invité

80's, Old School
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