Mosher, Scott - Inferno

Year of Release: 2004
Label: The Ambient Mind
Catalog Number: CD3
Format: CD
Total Time: 61:25:00

How can an album be both reflective of the past and modern sounding? I don't know, but Scott Mosher on Inferno manages it. The music is heavy melodic rock, accessible and memorable? but that only begins to describe it. Not that it's indescribable, mind you, but I'm stuck with this phrase: take Vangelis, Tangerine Dream, 80s Rush, a dash of Galahad and late-period (last period?) Pink Floyd, and a dash of Marillion. But saying so, at least making that kind of comparison seems so? cliché. And yet, it's apt. And that's the reflective part. The choice of instrumentation and style gives things a futuristic feel, which brings in the modernism. Ambient progressive melodic rock is what it is, to give it a genre.

What works best are the instrumentals and instrumental sections of the tracks with vocals. Though what you hear is mainly Scott Mosher on guitar, keyboards, voice and percussion, he is joined on most tracks by vocalist Todd Corsa, who also contributes additional guitar, soloing on two tracks. Not that Corsa is a bad vocalist; I'd say he's adequate, suited to the style of music being played, but this element comes secondary to the instrumentation. That sounds like a backhanded compliment; it's not. Corsa's voice is close at times to either Geoff Tate or Stu Nicholson (Galahad) or Geddy Lee, and yet most often like neither. Actually, I thought of Big Picture' Scott Pieper. The vocals have soft, hazy, dream effect given to them ? as I said, the vocals are given a secondary role behind the keyboards, guitars, and drums (and work the least on the whiney, nasally section of "Ghostland," and yet here, as elsewhere, the music itself is epic).

As mentioned, guitars and keyboards are the prominent element in the music, all given a futuristic feel. It's music that evokes images of crisp, smooth, clean computer graphics - e.g., Babylon 5 and later Star Trek series, with the added element of fractals and other abstract imagery. A raw, digital keyboard passage features in the intro to "Dark Sun," a piece that would be ideal as the background to some futuristic computer animation. The implied movement in the arrangement brings about those kind of thoughts. The music has a synthetic feel, but not in a bad way. It's the audio equivalent of the art that is featured on the cover and on the pages in the booklet - artwork that creates an otherworldly atmosphere.

Tracks I've liked most are "Inferno," "Dark Sun," the more (comparatively) melodic "Left Behind," the "neo-prog"-ish/Rush-ish "Look Into You," the more electronic-ambient "Season Of Fire" (a remix of the track that appears on his previous album, Virtuality), and "The World Fades To Gray," the latter being the "slowest" of the album's 11 tracks, as the arrangement is a bit more lanquid, power-balladic, and classic. And yes, you will think of classic 80s Rush, and mainly Signals. It's also the longest at 11-plus minutes - and here is where I thought of Marillion due to one particular guitar solo that has 90s Rothery all over it (circa Holidays In Eden). Truly, I like all of the tracks here, but at this particular moment? I'll just name a few?

As you might expect, if you've read my review (at least) of Virtuality, Mosher's topics are pointed and message driven? the environment and our destruction of it, form the backdrop to Mosher's lyrics, whether directly or indirectly. It's not an over-the-top call to action, but rather one that gives you thoughtful pause; one that maybe, upon reflection, will move you to make a change. And some pretty cool music to make that change to.

Descent (1:59) / Inferno (3:38) / Dark Sun (4:17) / Mindfield (4:18) / Left Behind (4:37) / Exile (8:57) / Engines Of Industry (5:26) / Look Into You (5:43) / Ghostland (4:26) / The World Fades To Gray (11:08) / Season Of Fire (Infernal Re-Mix) (6:57)

Scott Mosher - guitars, keyboards (synths, programming, sequencing), voice and percussion
Todd Corsa - lead and harmony vocals, additional guitar

Ambient Earth (1995)
Horsemeat (cass) (1995)
Virtuality (2001)
Inferno (2004)
Deep Horizon (2006)
Oceans Of Night - The Shadowheart Mirror (2009)

plus, appearances on:

Eye Of The Storm - Eye Of The Storm
F5's - Dawn Of A New Age (2000)

Genre: Progressive Rock

Origin US

Added: September 26th 2004
Reviewer: Stephanie Sollow
Artist website:
Hits: 511
Language: english


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