Enchant - Time Lost


Year of Release: 2001
Label: InsideOut Music America
Catalog Number: IOMACD 4003
Format: CD
Total Time: 53:25:00

In rereading my reviews of Enchant's catalog, I have discovered something. I like this band quite a bit more than those reviews reveal. I must, if I have their entire catalog to date (despite that the last one came as a review copy). So, in gearing up for their CalProg performance, it was Time Lost (1997) that got put in the player, in the event they drew any material for their set from it (it being one of those CDs I'd purchased, but hadn't had the chance to listen to). As it happens, they did draw from it: "Under The Sun."

Released in 1997, the material on Time Lost combines stuff recorded during the Wounded sessions plus three tracks from their early days, retooled a bit by the then current line up. But lest you think this is an album of tracks without any value, I say it stands on its own and could be an album in its own right. I especially like "Under The Sun" and "Interact." It isn't an album that is just for fans who must have everything, because the material is pretty good.

Hearing this album, it's unquestionably Enchant - that same mix of prog rock and metal that falls somewhere in between the two camps. In the churning piece "Blind Sided," which strongly recalls Marillion, especially in Ted Leonard's more subdued vocals (though he lets them soar as well), bass is right at the forefront. The percussion during the more mellow sections create an urgency that Leonard's languid delivery plays against, creating an odd tension in the track. "New Moon" teeters on the edge of 80s soft-rock, the taut percussion and churning rhythm (yes, another churning track? I think that's the signature element of Enchant, that churning sound) giving it an edge that bands like? oh Ambrosia comes to mind? didn't have. And then there are those Rothery-like guitar lines from Doug Ott. The easy accessibility is abandoned in the instrumental bridge as it introduces a complicated rhythm, where guitar, drums and bass play an intertwined pattern that, by means of a sweet guitar solo from Ott, gets back to the main rhythm.

"Under The Sun" is the most diverse, and may be my favorite of the seven. Traces of guitar accent the versus, soaringly sung, while drums (Paul Craddick) keeps the whole moving forward (including some bell-like percussion). It's not perfect, as things seem hurried just before the big guitar solo (and a little choppy as a result). And it's not without it's Marillion-isms - guitars chime in an otherwise suspended moment, recalling Marillion circa Seasons End and Holidays In Eden. But, had this been on one of the albums, it would sure have been a highlight - perhaps why it's also in the band's set. However, it wouldn't have fit in with the darker feel of Wounded, as it seems more like later Enchant (Juggling? or Blink Of An Eye).

In "Interact," one can clearly hear the bass and keys, the latter more so than in other tracks. And in contrast to most of the other tracks here (but one), it is more instrumental than vocal, though there are plenty of vocals as well. It serves as a guitar show case for Ott, playing fluid yet solid leads.

It's drums and percussion that take the lead with the "tribal" rhythms of "Standing Ground." It's a darker track for Enchant, compared to the other material, and arrangement-wise dates from '89. Darker, and spacially tighter, Leonard's vocals seeming closer in to the instruments than on other tracks, and more restrained.

The final track, "Meddle Man" is essentially an instrumental, though there is one lyrical passage at the end. As the band write in the liner notes, Mike Geimer (keyboards) sought to compose a sci-fi soundtrack like piece, as their favourite film at the time (1989) was Light Years, an animated film. The piece has a sense of movement, of either following some chase scene (in a sci-fi milieu, of course). In it, there are very faint hints of Rush, but also some very parpy keys characteristic with so-called "neo-prog."

What the pieces lack - and what many Enchant pieces have - is a phrase that sticks with you after the album has finished. You enjoy the listening experience, but nothing rattles around in the brain afterward. For instance, as I write this, "Blink Of An Eye" comes to mind. Does a band need a hook for it to be good? Well no, of course not; it is just different for this band not to. At least to me. And yet, the music in a very general way stays with you because it is very much in keeping with the band's now signature sound and style.


Tracklisting:
Blind Sided / New Moon / Under The Sun / Foundations / Interact / Standing Ground / Mettle Man

Musicians:
Mike 'Benignus' Geimer - keyboards
Paul Craddick - drums
Ted Leonard - vocals
Doug Ott - guitars
Ed Platt - bass

Discography:
A Blueprint of the World (1995)
Wounded (1997)
Time Lost (1997)
Break (1998)
Juggling 9 Or Dropping 10 (2000)
Blink Of An Eye (2002)
Tug Of War (2003)
Live At Last (2004)

Live At Last (2004) (DVD)

Genre: Progressive Rock

Origin US

Added: July 25th 2004
Reviewer: Stephanie Sollow
Score:
Artist website: www.enchantband.com
Hits: 1354
Language: english

  

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