Map of The Past
Having been around since the mid-80s, this pro rock act from the UK… has been re-born in the 21st century by adding the new vocalist & guitarist, John Mitchell (Arena, Kino, Frost, etc.), to its ranks. John used to be a fan of the band… and now he is playing and sings for them… he is indeed a very talented guy… he has worked and played in so many albums all these years… apparently, his work in Arena has made him very well-respected.
The previous album “The Tall Ships” (2008), which meant the resurrection of the band, was well-received by the prog rock community. “Map Of The Past”… has quite a few connections with that album but it is more expressive, atmospheric and craving. After all, this is the first concept album of the band… which explores themes of the past, as seen through old family photographs. A rather personal, emotional, moody and nostalgic music… with some pop as well as AOR & rock passages that are embellishing the band’s (neo) prog-art longing music, is delivered through this release. This band never stays of safe waters… and likes to move to new music territories with every new release. John sounds very sentimental at times… while the song arrangements are very smart… and the production is wonderful.
I do not see how this album can’t appeal, especially, to the UK (neo) prog rock fans that fancy melodic art progressive rock music from the 80s, the 90s and the 00s. The fans of the band will enjoy it as much as the previous album… no doubt about it.