"Trails Out of the Gloom" (CDBaby; 2010)

Reviewed by R. Scott Bolton


"Trails Out of the Gloom" is reminiscent of 70s progressive rock with a modern prog rock kick. The first track (the title track) may have you thinking you've purchased a Chris Cornell record (the good kind; not that dance stuff), but the CD expands from that point on.

Like most progressive rock of that early era, "Trails Out of the Gloom" features a lot of acoustic music, keyboards,  and vocals that are pure and clear. There's a little bit of Pink Floyd here, although comparisons to a David Gilmour solo CD or later Pink Floyd (a la "The Division Bell") might be more appropriate. "Trails Out of the Gloom" isn't as "spacey" as Pink Floyd sometimes get. But, like Gilmour's work, the solos simply soar and the guitars are truly beautiful and epic.

If there's a problem with this CD, it's probably that, like a lot of progressive rock, "Trails Out of the Gloom" may not be hard enough for some Rough Edge readers. It's heavy, in the way that a lot of progressive rock is heavy (like Porcupine Tree, for example) but that has more to do with atmosphere than with amplifiers. Most of this CD is acoustic guitar and lighter rock'n'roll ... and yet the CD often sounds dark. It's a fascinating combination and I rather like it.

Don't get me wrong, there are some harder rock elements on this "Trails Out of the Gloom," but it's a progressive record first and foremost. Knowing what you're in for going in will help you enjoy and understand this album to the fullest.

For more information, check out http://www.myspace.com/fenmusicvancouver or http://www.fenmusic.ca/.

Rating Guide:

A classic. This record will kick your ass.

Killer. Not a classic but it will rock your world.

So-so. You've heard better.

Pretty bad. Might make a nice coaster.

Self explanatory. Just the sight of the cover makes you wanna hurl.

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Copyright 2011 by R. Scott Bolton. All rights reserved.
Revised: 10 Jan 2019 01:27:04 -0500.