Hackett, Steve - Voyage of the Acolyte (75) - 6/10
Nice album by the former Genesis guitarist, but not a must. Some beautiful moments, but for some reason it didn't take many listens before this album started boring me.
Hackett, Steve - Defector (80) - 5/10
Harmonium - Si On Avait Besoin D'Une Cinquieme Saison (75) - 9.5/10
Prog sometimes on the brighter side, and sometimes very melancholic. With its use of flute, acoustic guitar and mellotron and absence of drums, its sound is easily comparable to Celeste's excellent Principe di un giorno, perhaps even better. Though Harmonium were from Quebec, there is a typical French flavour in the music, and that is not only because of the French vocals. (Well, the "flavour" could of course just as well be typically Quebequois, but I don't really know music from this region that well). Okay. The Celeste comparison has really said almost everything: This is one of the most tranquil and pleasant records I've ever heard. Be aware that track 2, "Dixie", is more of a chanson than a prog piece, and a few parts (very few, really) are close to being cheesy, but fortunately only close. Don't expect the record to be anything else than lovely, full of wonderful melodies and a mesmerising atmosphere, and it will blow you away. Like a breeze, not an explosion, though. How can a record filled with flute, mellotron and acoustic guitar ever be bad?