Coralspin’s debut album came with the promise of ‘barnstorming prog rock, like early Queen sung by Kate Bush’ an intriguing if slightly odd boast. ‘Sons Of The Sleeping Giant’ the opener is definitely in prog metal territory with a little Curved Air and Genesis thrown in for good measure. A great opener that whets the appetite for the rest of the album.
Ellie Blyth’s vocals are perfectly suited to this type of music and on the excellent ‘You’re Wrong’ they are showcased to full potential.
‘Mistimed’ and ‘Burn My Eyes’ are more straightforward rockers although the latter has some interesting changes of direction.
Half way through the album I realise that it’s Annette Peacock that the vocals remind me of, none more so than on the track ‘Sky’s End’ which also contains the first meaningful soloing on the album. I’m not a big fan of prog rock soloing but here it fits in just perfectly.
If you like your prog with a heavy dose of melody then look no further. ‘Songbird’ is a great example. I suppose some may compare to Magenta but really the only similarity is that it is prog with a female vocalist. Coralspin are certainly ‘rockier’ and will appeal to those brought up on Jenny Haan’s Lion and Curved Air but the subtleties of Coralspin will carry much more weight with the prog community. ‘Night Stalker’ is a radio friendly rocker too along with a good chunk of this debut album.
I’d personally have preferred more instrumental sections and grandiose keyboard epics but then they would be the parts that everyone else would hate, so for now i’ll have to make do with the climactic ending to ‘Aching’.
Recommended for fans of melodic rock with subtle prog infusions