Ricocher - Chains

Year of Release: 2004
Label: ProgRock Records
Catalog Number: n/a
Format: CD
Total Time: 55:40:00

It is very interesting to see a band grow over a period of time, especially if you have witnessed the beginning of a band. I met John van Heugten, keyboard player of Ricocher, a long time ago, at an Arena show. This was just before the band released their first EP, in 2000, Quest For The Heartland. At that time I thought they were very inspired by Arena and tried to imitate their style. But when two years later their first full length disc appeared, I knew they were here to stay. But with their third disc, they have grown to maturity and it is clear they have been working on their sound.

Ricocher has created their own sound over the years and Chains is a milestone for the band. This is their first album on their new label ProgRock Records (their first two releases were independent releases). Also they had the opportunity to record the album in Everon?s Spacelab Studio. So the album had a good foundation. But composition wise the band has also grown a lot. They included three conceptual pieces on the album, where the band takes their time to work out the story. The drums are mixed perfectly into the songs, as they are there, but never dominate. Bassist Nijssen definitely stands out on this album, with his full and warm play and this is one reason why I enjoy the album so much. It has a rich sound.

Also the excellent solos by van Helmond are a treat to the ears. I enjoyed his play from the first album on, but here he shows he really is an amazing guitarist. The last musician is the one that binds all other instruments together: keyboard player John van Heugten. I?m glad to hear he developed his own style, rather than sound a lot like his great example, Clive Nolan. Great solos and touching soundscapes are what he brings to the speakers of your audio system. Even vocalist Boerekamps sounds better. I always had my thoughts on his voice, as in the beginning he had a very obvious accent and I enjoyed the music despite his vocals. But now he sounds a lot better, which only contributes to more listening pleasure.

If you already enjoyed the previous Ricocher albums, you will certainly love this one. If you are not familiar with them, but you like solid, melodic progressive rock, then you must try Chains. It won?t disappoint you.

Virtual Images: I. Empty Chambers - II. Beyond Terms of Humanity - III. Out of Control / Bitter Tears / Sand in Your Eyes: I. Perception - II. Reflected - III. The Silhouette Of You / Whispering Voices / Locked Inside: I. Misguided Lights - II. Question Within The Answer / Point Of No Return / Breaking The Chain

Erwin Boerekamps - vocals, guitar
Bart van Helmond - guitars, vocals
John van Heugten - keyboards, vocals
Maikel van der Meer - drums and percussion
Niels Nijssen - bass, vocals

Quest For The Heartland (ep) (2000)
Cathedral Of Emotions (2002)
Chains (2004)

Genre: Progressive Rock

Origin NL

Added: March 29th 2005
Reviewer: Marcel Haster
Artist website: www.ricocher.com
Hits: 1757
Language: english


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