Freia Music 2016   Netherlands  CD  55:43mins

Neo-Progressive Rock

Rating 90/100 Geoff Penn

Right from the very first bars Aurora Project’s “World of Grey” is one of those albums which is instantly accessible, the global melodic approach to the construction of the various tracks immediately grabs your full attention and it is, in this vein that the formula for such harmonious tuneful songs continue throughout the eight tracks. Of course such easy accessibility, to any kind of music, can quite often be a handicap whereby anything so easily absorbed can be just as easily discarded. But in the case of this album, there are so many underlying passages of beautifully constructed music that emerge to the fore with successive plays and therefore there is always something different to discover at every junction and around every musical corner. What’s more there is nothing at all predictable about the music as it flows and ebbs with each successive motion in an interestingly unique way. From a listening perspective, the superb beautifully phrased vocals from Dennis Binnekade make an immediate impact, his melodic voice being perfectly in tune and very easy on the ear. Then working perfectly in tandem with the vocalist, the Guitar of Remco v.d.Berg’s is just so beautifully engaged throughout and in such a creative way too adding floods of colour to the construction of the various pieces with deceptive ease nothing fancy or too elaborate but lovely little runs and multitudes of sustained notes which piece the sections together perfectly. There are many moments too when the guitar extends out to form a nice bridge but never too lengthy or seemingly over-complicated as to be considered as a full-blown solo just a nice economic use of the instrument in subtle style. The keyboards certainly play their part too providing layers of delicate sound and this together with nice interludes of choral effects deliver a nice backwash in support of the lead guitar and vocals. There is no failing too in the timekeeping department from the excellent bass guitarist and the stylish drummer who hold everything together in a perfectly structured fashion. Notable too are the well-organized backing vocals which add yet a further dimension to the overall sound. Now the only thing, but certainly not a problem, is what it is all about from the conceptual storyline point of view. I guess with further spins I might just penetrate the meaning of it all but it really matters not as the music is otherwise perfect in every sense.

Summary: A very melodic and well-constructed slice of melodic progressive rock in the style of Marillion, IQ and Pendragon with nice tunes, great vocals and it is, without doubt, a real treat for the ears in every respect.

Artwork: A fairly stylish colourful cover with a weird zombie-like creature that adorns the front in a quite menacing style.

Line-up / Musicians

Dennis Binnekade / Vocals
Joris Bol / Drums
Mox ‘Marcel’ Guyt / Keys
Rob Krijgsman / Bass