US - A Sorrow In Our Hearts

Year of Release: 2002
Label: independent
Catalog Number: n/a
Format: CD
Total Time: 59:56:00

Let me say up front that I'm not the best person to review this album. These guys owe a whole lot to the Moody Blues, and I have never understood what was so great about that band. As far as I'm concerned, you could take everything the Moody Blues ever recorded and condense it down to one -- maybe two -- decent albums and just throw the rest away. The Moody Blues always struck me as way too sappy.

So, here comes US, a group that vocally, and often lyrically, sounds a heck of a lot like the Moody Blues. Truth is, US actually sounds like two bands melded into one. The instrumental sections bring to mind a Yes/Genesis hybrid, whereas the vocal sections scream Moody Blues. The transition from one style to the other is often jarring, like moving from a dark movie theater into the afternoon sun.

Sounding like the Moody Blues notwithstanding, the melodies on this album are nowhere near as well developed as their stylistic ancestor's were. In fact, the vocal melodies sound very similar from one song to the next. For this reason (as well as because of my dislike for the Moody Blues), as I listened to this CD, I found myself waiting for the vocal sections to end and the instrumental sections to start. This is where the fun really begins for me. When they dig into their instruments and leave the vocals behind, US can crank out some pretty decent prog.

Recording-wise, the sound is good, with professional production. The CD package itself is also high quality, including a full-color 12-page booklet.

In summary, this CD is a bit of a mixed bag. If you like the older stuff by the Moody Blues, you'll probably dig what this band has to offer. If you don't like the Moody Blues, but can tolerate that style enough to enjoy the instrumental sections on this album, you may also find this album likable. Otherwise ... let's just say that I'd love to hear US do an instrumental prog album. It'd probably be great.

Rollercoaster (9:05) / The Acid Dream (11:58) / Dog (10:22) / Forever Yours (5:56) / A Sorrow in Your Hearts (9:41) / Passport to Magonia (12:38)

Jos Wernars - bass, guitars, vocals
Ernest Wernars - keyboards and vocals
Paul Van Velzen - drums, vocals

Saga - To Whom It Concerns (1975/6)
The Wizzard Of Us (ltd. edition demo) (1990s)
A Sorrow In Our Hearts (2002)
Eamon''s Day (2003)
The Ghost of Human Kindness (2004)
The Young and the Restless (2006)
Reflections (2007)
Climbing Mount Improbable (2008)
Everything Changes (2009)
Feeding The Crocodile (2010)
The Road Less Travelled (2011)

Genre: Progressive Rock

Origin NL

Added: June 26th 2002
Reviewer: Clayton Walnum

Artist website:
Hits: 902
Language: english


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