Ayreon - Actual Fantasy Revisited

Year of Release: 2004
Label: InsideOut Music
Catalog Number: 65090
Format: CD
Total Time: 102:35:00

I did not have the pleasure to hear Actual Fantasy in 1996. Nearly 10 years later Arjen Lucassen decided to remake the progressive rock musical story. I had to watch the bonus DVD to understand what went into this project. Believe me it was a pleasure to watch the DVD, not to mention listening to the Actual Fantasy Revisited version several times to appreciate all of the hard work that went into making the album again, or as Arjen says in the video, it?s a continuation or extension of the music.

After my initial listen, I was not as taken with this album as I usually am with recordings from the Lucassen catalog. I have nothing to compare this version to; as I said, I did not hear the original release. I considered how long ago this all came together and listened several times before coming up with a final assessment. I enjoyed it more with each listen, however this is not Arjen?s best work. It is quite good, just not on the same level as The Human Equation or Into The Electric Castle. Realistically, that would not be fair to compare it to those two fine releases. In the interview at the studio were the album was recorded, Arjen explained that many of the parts of the album were rebuilt and replaced. He created new guitar parts and totally removed some sampling (some parts were actually lost), then replaced it with real drums to give it more warmth. It is evident that it came together quite well as the sound is sharp and full.

The video for ?The Stranger From Within? is very cool. The effects of the innovative MTV video ?Take On Me? from fellow Norwegians Ah-Ha are duplicated. I really enjoyed the visit with Arjen in the studio with his band. He takes the time to explain why he decided to remake the album and how he did it. It makes for a complete experience that unfolds before you on the CD. The bottom line is you get a better album with many more features including the option of listening to it in 5.1 surround sound on the DVD. It is a nice package that is well worth checking out.

Actual Fantasy / Abbey of Synn / The Stranger from Within / Computer Eyes / Beyond the Last Horizon / Far Side of the World / Back on Planet Earth / Forevermore / The Dawn of Man

Bonus DVD: Actual Fantasy Revisited 2004 - 5.1 Surround Mix / Actual Fantasy 1996 - original version / Video clip The Stranger from Within - 5.1 & 2.0 / Featurette: Recording drums, bass and guitar 2004

Arjen Lucassen - guitars, keyboards, banjo, bass, Hammond, harpsichord, lute, mandolin, Mellotron, Mini-moog, vocals
Cleem Determeijer - keyboards, piano, synths
Edward Reekers - vocals
Okkie Huysdens - vocals
Ren? Merkelbach - Hammond, harpsichord, keyboards
Robert Soeterboek - vocals
Peter Vink - bass
Ewa Alberink - Flute

Ayreon - The Final Experiment (1995)
Ayreon - Actual Fantasy (1996)
Ayreon - Into The Electric Castle (1998)
Ayreon - The Univeral Migrator Part 1: The Dream Sequencer (2000)
Ayreon - The Universal Migrator Part 2: Flight Of The Migrator (2000)
Ayreon - Ayreonnauts Only (2000)
Ambeon - Fate Of A Dreamer (2001)
Arjen Anthony Lucassen's Star One - Space Metal (2002)
Arjen Anthony Lucassen's Star One - Live On Earth (2003)
Ayreon - The Human Equation (2004)
Ayreon - Actual Fantasy Revisited (2004)
Ayreon - The Final Experiment - Special Edition (2005)
Ayreon - 01011001 (2008)
Ayreon - Timeline (2008)
Arjen Lucassen's Guilt Machine - Arjen Lucassen's Guilt Machine (2009)
Arjen Anthony Lucassen's Star One - Victims Of The Modern Age (2010)
Arjen Anthony Lucassen - Lost In The New Real (2012)
Ayreon - The Theory Of Everything (2013)
Ayreon - The Theater Equation (CD/DVD) (2016)
Ayreon - The Source (CD/DVD) (2017)
Ayreon - Ayreon Universe - Best Of Ayreon Live (2018)

Ayreon - The Theater Equation (BR) (2016) Ayreon - Ayreon Universe - Best Of Ayreon Live (DVD/BR) (2018)

Genre: Symphonic Prog

Origin NL

Added: March 29th 2005
Reviewer: Keith "Muzikman" Hannaleck
Artist website: www.ayreon.com
Hits: 1198
Language: english


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