I have always
rated albums featuring Dan Britton (Cerebus Effect, Birds And Buildings)
with ten points, and I don’t see why I should change that habit now
with the second Deluge Grander album The Form Of The Good. After the
debut was released three years ago, he took some time of with this more
vocal oriented band Birds And Buildings. Prog purists will therefore be
more than delighted to hear that the more classical sounding Deluge
Grander are not only back, but even slightly better then before.
First of all, it’s always a little bizarre to use the term "progressive”
for a genre that uses no elements that came after the mid-Seventies.
Even if this makes Deluge Grander a derivative band, their shameless
crossovering of everything complex from eons ago allows them to still
build a niche of their own. Where their debut started with a glorious
half hour epic but then lost steam in the second half, The Form Of The
Good manages to distribute its qualities more evenly this time. Starting
with the five minute short Before The Common Era, the band uses this
track to warm themselves up. Slower in mood than their general material,
it is also the only song that comes with some vocals. Things heat up
with the fourteen minute running The Tree Factory where Deluge Grander
offer everything for which I have loved them in the past, and then some
more. The many guest musicians on classical instruments provide a more
classical orientation, but the down-to-earth production makes sure that
the overall grittiness always prevails. Common Era Caveman is a little
shorter, before Aggrandizement with its nearly twenty minutes is the
undisputed heart-piece on this record. The eight minute title track
closes another unforgettable chapter in the musical insanity of Dan
Britton and his cohorts.
Don’t expect me to describe the songs
in details, because in this case, it’s really true that writing about
music is like dancing to architecture. Deluge Grander play symphonic
progressive rock that sounds like an unsigned band from the Seventies.
The vast keyboard tapestries are not unlike what Yes did in their best
times, minus the vocals. The classical influences remind me a little of
Mahavishnu Orchestra. Magma could well be used for the drama and pathos
of it all. Canterbury says hello with its playful spirit. Combine all
these different faces of prog, and Deluge Grander once again triumph
with an over-ambitious masterpiece that can only polarise. Those who
like their music complex and unexpected will discover new elements every
time they listen to The Form Of The Good, but if you hate prog anyway,
then Deluge Grander will definitely be your nemesis.
that the band did everything themselves, from composing to recording to
producing to publishing, the whole endeavour deserves even more
respect. The Form Of The Good never sounds as clean as your
run-of-the-mill prog productions, but that’s another part of where it is
getting its charm. Its totally unpretentious, direct sound makes Deluge
Grander a band that sounds more alive than any other artist in the
genre. Prog fans who don’t check this out will have missed one of the
great classics to come!