Dragonfly - Dragonfly

Year of Release: 1995
Label: Musea Records
Catalog Number: FGBG 4148.AR
Format: CD
Total Time: 62:50:00

Many times, while perusing the Syn-Phonic site, I've been tempted to order this disc, the sole, self-titled release from the Swiss band Dragonfly. Well, I finally did and, yow!!! This is the kind of album I spend all my time and money looking for. This CD is, without a doubt, a masterpiece of late 70s continental symphonic progressive rock. All the musicians are first rate players, the guitarist Marcel Ege, and the band's keyboardist Markus Husi in particular. Their songwriting and arranging are outstanding and the performances from all involved are consistently exciting and challenging. I hear many similarities to some of the finest symphonic bands of the era, especially Yes, but never any direct references. The first and fourth tracks, "Behind The Spiders Web? and "Willing And Ready To Face It All" are similar in style to Flash or Crack The Sky, symphonic with a strong dose of guitar led hard rock. Track two, "Shellycoat," is a seven minute fanfare that features impressive instrumental prowess, sounding like a mix of PFM's "E'Festa" and The Dixie Dregs.

"Dragonfly," at eighteen plus minutes, and "The Riddle Princess," at nearly sixteen minutes, are two fine, epic works. "Dragonfly" in particular is one of the best pieces I have heard in a long, long while, with its lengthy Wakeman-esque piano etudes, its lovely ascending themes and its incredible guitar playing. It also features some great Squire like bass playing from Klaus Monnig and Marcel Ege's guitar work on this fine piece is absolutely jaw dropping as he puts in one of the best performances I have ever heard, sounding like a cross between Roine Stolt and Jan Akkerman.

This release is a lost gem, one of the most exciting (well, for me anyway) finds in many, many months. Dragonfly is brimming with well developed and executed themes, odd time signatures, brilliant synthesizer and guitar work and, while the bands lyrics will reveal no hidden truths, they are thoughtful enough, and are well delivered by vocalist Rene Buhler.

I cannot recommend this release highly enough. If you, like me, love the sound of good old traditional symphonic progressive rock, then this is a disc that you must, must, I say, have in your collection. If you buy nothing else this year, buy yourself this disc. The epic "Dragonfly" is by itself worth far, far more than the few dollars you will have to shell out for this disc. And no, please, no, you don't need to thank me. Just being able to tell you about Dragonfly is reward enough.

Originally released 1982 by Highfly

Behind The Spider's Web (5:08) / Shellycoat (7:08) / You Know My Ways (I Belong To You) (3:49) / Willing And Ready To Face It All (5:15) / Dragonfly (18:27) / Humdinger (7:02) / The Riddle Princess (15:41)

Rene Buhler - lead vocals, percussion
Markus Husi - Hammond C3, Clavinet D6, ARP Synthesizer, Oberhiem Synthesizer, grand piano
Marcel Ege - electric and acoustic guitars
Klaus Monnig - bass, Taurus bass pedals, backing vocals
Beat Bosiger - drums
Patrick Baumgartner - bass

Dragonfly (1982/1995)

Genre: Symphonic Prog

Origin CH

Added: January 17th 2005
Reviewer: Tom Karr
Hits: 1284
Language: english


[ Back to Reviews Index | Post Comment ]