Asia - Silent Nation

Year of Release: 2004
Label: InsideOut Music
Catalog Number: IOMCD 175SPV 085-60842
Format: CD
Total Time: 00:00:00

The group is best known for their premiere album. Back in the day, Asia was a supergroup consisting of members from King Crimson (John Wetton), ELP (Carl Palmer), Yes (Steve Howe), and The Buggles (Geoffrey Downes). With their self-titled debut, they lived up to this designation. The album was extraordinary.

Delving deeper, none of their following releases ever came close. These albums just did not have the same kind of heart. The first album was pretty much all that was essential in their discography.

As they made changes to the line-up, they seemingly lost their motivation. The package seemed to gradually fall apart. Asia Then and Now seemed to be the final nail in the coffin. Simply put, the "now" part just didn't measure up to the "then" part.

Circa 2004, Asia is back with a few different faces and some brand-spanking new ideas. The result is fantastic. They are re-animated and back from the grave. On Silent Nation, they play with youth and vigor. There must be something in the water and my guess is that it's Viagra.

Asia currently consists of members from each generation. Geoffrey Downes (Keyboards/Background Vocals) remains from the original eighties line-up. John Payne (Vocals/Bass/Guitar), who was technically John Wetton's replacement, comes from the nineties crew. Guthrie Govan (Guitar) and Chris Slade (Drums) were brought in for the 2001 tour. They are now permanent fixtures in the band. Together this quintet is a cohesive team of stylish songwriters and proficient performers.

Every aspect of the album is good. It is one shot progressive; the rest is commercial in nature. The pieces don't reach epic levels, but they are a tad bit longer than usual. With this added length, there are sinful solos and blissful breakouts that would typically hit the cutting room floor. This is where the progressiveness of it all comes into play, but there is a limit. The songs are still relatively short and to the point. Each has a catchy hook, a brief bridge, and an overall simple formula. This doesn't seem to hinder its ability to prick all the right nerves.

The highlights include "What About Love?," "Midnight," the title track "Silent Nation," and "Gone Too Far." "I Will Be There For You" has a great chorus that sounds very much like Roy Orbison's "You Got It." "Darkness Day" is ripe for a James Bond flick.

While there is no single track to rival the classics from the eighties such as "Time Will Tell," "Heat Of The Moment," or "Sole Survivor," each track is solid gold. Each track comes close. The separation is razor thin and pretty much applies to every song on the album.

Silent Nation is as good as the premiere. It may actually be better since there isn't a single weak moment on the album. Hopefully, subsequent releases keep on course. With Geoffrey Downes at the helm and some great talent to back him, Asia should continue to be successful well into the future. Time Will Tell?

What About Love / Long Way From Home / Midnight / Blue Moon Monday / Silent Nation / Ghost In The Mirror / Gone Too Far / I Will Be There For You / Darkness Day / The Prophet

Geoffrey Downes - keyboards
John Payne - vocals, bass
Chris Slade - drums
Guthrie Govan - guitar

Alpha (1983)
Astra (1985)
Then & Now (1990)
Live in Moscow (1991)
Aqua (1992)
Aria (1994)
Arena (1996)
Archiva I (1996)
Archiva II (1996)
Live In Nottingham (1997)
Live In Osaka (1997)
Live in Köln (1997)
Asia Live In Philadelphia (1997)
Live At The Town & Country Club (1999)
Live Acoustic (1999)
Rare (1999)
Anthology (1999)
Axioms (1999)
Archives - The Best Of Asia 1988-1997 (2000)
Heat Of The Moment: The Very Best Of Asia 1982-1990 (2000)
The Collection (2000)
Aura (2000/2001)
Enso Kai (Live In Tokyo 1983) (2001)
Alive In Hallowed Halls (2001)
America - Live In The USA (2002)
Anthologia: 20th Anniversary Geffen Years Collection 1982-1990 (2002)
Dragon Attack (2003)
Live In Buffalo (2003)
Live In Hyogo (2003)
Live In Massachusetts '83 (2004)
Silent Nation (2004)
Gold (2005)
Definitive Collection (2006)
Live In Nottingham (2007)
Fantasia - Live In Tokyo (2007)
Extended Versions (2007)
Phoenix (2008)
Omega (2010)
Live Around The World (2010)
Resonance (The Omega Tour 2010) (2012)
XXX (2012)

Asia In Asia (VHS) (1984)
Classic Rock Legends (DVD) (2001)
Live In Moscow 1990 (DVD) (2003)
America: Live In The USA (DVD) (2003)
Fantasia - Live In Tokyo (2007)
Spirit Of The Night - The Phoenix Tour - Live In Cambridge 2009 (DVD) (2009)

Genre: Progressive Rock

Origin UK

Added: August 8th 2004
Reviewer: Joshua "Prawg Dawg" Turner
Artist website:
Hits: 3225
Language: english


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