Aclaración...

Este espacio se reserva el derecho de publicar sobre cualquier tema que parezca interesante a su staff, no solamente referidos a la cuestión musical sino también a lo político y social.
Si no estás de acuerdo con lo expresado podrás dejar tu comentario siempre que no sea ofensivo, discriminador o violento...

Y no te confundas, no nos interesa la piratería, lo nuestro es simplemente desobediencia civil y resistencia cultural a favor del libre acceso al conocimiento (nuestra música es, entre otras tantas cosas, conocimiento).

miércoles, 12 de agosto de 2015

After Crying - Overground Music (1993)

Artista: After Crying
Álbum: Overground Music
Año: 1993
Género: Rock sinfónico ecléctico
Duración: 40:13
Nacionalidad: Hungría


Lista de Temas:
1. European Things (Homenaje a Frank Zappa)
2. Don't Betray Me
3. Confess Your Beauty
4. Madrigal Love Part One
5. ...to Black...
6. Madrigal Love Part Two (Over Every Sea)
7. Madigral Love Part Free
8. Shining (...to the Powers of Fairyland)

Alineación:
- Csaba Vedres / piano, voz principal (1,3,5,6), voz y sintetizador
- Péter Pejtsik / cello, voz principal (2,4) y voces
Personal adicional:
Kristóf Fogolyán / flauta
Zsolt Maroevich / viola
Judit Andrejski / voz
Pál Makovecz / trombón
Otto Rácz / oboe
Aladár Tüske / fagot
Balázs Winkler / trompetista


Hoy empezamos el día a full, prepárense!
Alguien pidió este disco en el chat y vino el Mago Alberto y lo comparte. Desde Hungría, tierra de los tremendos Solaris que ya hemos presentado en el blog, llegan los After Crying. Otro ejemplo de la intrínseca relación entre la música más vanguardista y progresiva con la música popular, en este caso en forma de música tradicional húngara. Ahora les dejo el comentario de Alberto pero antes hago una presentación de estos tipos, como para que sepan lo que pueden encontrar aquí, y les aseguro que más de un desprevenido (si que queda alguno aún en este espacio) se llevará una tremenda sorpresa:

After Crying es un ensamble de músicos académicos provenientes de Hungría; ellos mezclan la música clásica con el rock progresivo sinfónico el jazz y la música contemporánea de cámara. También hay una clara influencia a la psicodelia de Syd Barret y a las partes mas oscuras de King Crimson, entre otras influencias más.
El nombre de la banda fue bautizado en 1986, pero ya venían trabajando desde 1978. Sus miembros fundadores eran: Egervári Gábor (flauta), Görgényi Tamás (voz), Torma Ferenc (guitarra y sintetizador) y Vedres Csaba (piano y sintetizador).
La interesante propuesta que proponían estos excelentes músicos los llevó a cambiar la formación en varias ocasiones. Hasta que en 1986 Csaba forma un trío con Gábor y el chelista Pejtsik Péter al que en definitiva bautizarían como After Crying. Junto a Solaris es considerada la banda más importantes del rock progresivo de Hungría llevándolos a actuar con próceres del genero como Peter Hammill.
El presente aquí es su gran album debut salido en el año 1990. Una caja de sorpresas interesantisimas: rock sinfónico progresivo, jazz, música clásica e influencias de la música tradicional Húngara y tantas otras cosas más.
El trabajo abre con un homenaje a uno de los ídolos de la banda: Frank Zappa.
La Guitarra en La Ventana


Ahora sí, realizadas las presentaciones correspondientes, les paso el comentario del disco de mano del propio Mago Alberto:

Dentro del amplio espectro musical que ofrece este blog, sin lugar a dudas hay muchísimas bandas que aún ni siquiera hay mención alguna, y ésta es una de ellas, After Crying, que junto a Solaris deben ser las bandas húngaras más conocidas de la escena progre mundial, una particularidad es que estos muchachotes se dan el gusto de innovar en sus proyectos y no ponerse límites a la hora de proyectar sus composiciones, repletas de diversos instrumentos y coqueteando con el clásico, el jazz, el progresivo más ortodoxo, o la musica tradicional húngara, aunque muchísimos comentaristas los relacionan con la música de Frank Zappa, si escuchamos atentamente su discografía estan muy lejos de ello, solo existe una admiración muy profunda por el Franky, y es solo eso, admiración.
Sus discos son muy distintos entre sí y dentro de sus trabajos mas renombrados está éste que presentamos hoy y el memorable "Struggle for Life", un album doble grabado en vivo que tiene todo lo que uno puede pedirle a una banda, una obra imperdible que quizás tambien compartiremos por acá.
Si hay que destacar algo de After Crying es su buen gusto, cada track es una invitación al placer auditivo, las cuerdas, los vientos, el piano, las voces, todo esta exquisitamente puesto al servicio de la música, una banda super de vanguardia que no decepciona a nadie.
Han cambiado integrantes, han compartido escenario con Peter Hammill, con Jethro Tull, Banda del Mutuo Soccorso, y se dieron el gusto de grabar en vivo una version de "Starless" de King Crimson junto a John Wetton, considerando particularmente que es hasta superior a la original, han participado en grandes festivales europeos, y son considerados como una banda que han marcado tendencia dentro del progresivo. Son diferentes, son innovadores, sus discos son piezas exquisitas, si te gusta el progre de alto vuelo, si te gusta Solaris, esta es una banda imperdible.
"Overground Music" es una obra que te atrapa desde la primera canción, y es su primer disco, donde los muchachos te van mostrando la instrumentación que luego se va haciendo multifacética, y donde los climas te inundan como la lluvia que está sobre Buenos Aires.
El finde hablando con el Vampiro antes del show de Catukua, le mencionaba la particularidad del rock nórdico, y hoy podríamos asegurar que el rock húngaro tambien tiene lo suyo, y vuelvo a reiterar quizás como la gran particularidad que nos viene desde Hungría ya desde la mano de Bela Bartok, "el buen gusto musical". Para paladares exquisitos. Señoras y señores: After Crying.
Alberto

Comento una frase que saco del siguiente comentario que copio: "Overground Music" quizás no sea de lo mejor de After Crynig pero es una muy buena carta de presentación, para quienes ignoraban su existencia. Tengan en cuenta que éste es solamente su álbum debut... ¡pero que debut!.

El trabajo abre con un homenaje a uno de los ídolos de la banda: Frank Zappa. Una pieza que comienza en plan rockero pero arreglado para cuerdas y vientos, una verdadera genialidad. Los músicos se presentan dando una impresionante demostración de como ejecutan sus respectivos instrumentos. Magníficos pasajes de flautas cellos y piano para una letra que habla de todo lo que es, fue y será el continente europeo. Describe de una forma un tanto surrealista, extravagante y exótica el caos de la Europa contemporánea, tal como la describiría el propio Zappa (por cierto con vida aun por esos tiempos).
Le sigue la apaciguante "Don´t Betray Me" con impecables arreglos de vientos, donde mas se destaca la trompeta de Balázs Winkler. La enérgica melodía vocal de "Confess Your beauty" es quizás la que mas nos recuerde al Pink Floyd de Barret una bella pieza de instrumentación exquisita.
La secuencia " Madrigal Love" se ve apenas interrumpida por una de los momentos mas interesantes del álbum : "...to black...". Ottó Racz con su oboe es quizás quien mas se luce aquí. La pieza de carácter oscuro (como bien se la nombra) parece describir una situación de desengaño amoroso en medio de una sombría noche invernal. Muchas influencias del costado mas oscuro de King Crimson.
Cierra el álbum la dulce y lúgubre a la vez "Shining (...to the Powers of Fairyland)". Una extensa pieza que cuenta con la hermosa voz de Judit Andrejszki. Es excluyente los arreglos de vientos tanto como de la flauta y en el final los bronces (trompeta y trombón).
Hasta 1994 After Crying continuó con mas obras de gran calidad: "Megalázottak És Megszomorítottak (The Insulted And Injuried)" (1992) y "Föld És Ég (Earth And Sky)" (1994) con varias idas y venidas entre sus integrantes pasando de ser un cuarteto con el típico sostén rítmico de bajo y batería, guitarras y teclados, a un ensamble de 15 integrantes.
Una gran incorporación también fue sin duda alguna el músico Winkler Balázs quien aporto trompetas, voces y sintetizadores.
Luego de esta trilogía de álbumes Csaba abandona el ensamble y para iniciar un nuevo proyecto: Townscream. Pero la ida de el alma-mater de la agrupación daría sus buenos resultados. Luego de un periodo de extenso silencio y ese fruto seria "De Profundis" de 1996, el cual obtuvo excelentes críticas. El éxito ascendente del grupo lo llevo a participar en varios festivales de gran envergadura como por ejemplo el "West End Festival de Budapest", en donde interpretaron el clásico de King Crimson "Starless", junto al mismisimo John Wetton y otros como "ProgLive" de 1998 y el "Baja-Prog" de México en 1999.
Otros grandes trabajos editados fueron álbumes como "Elsô Évtized (The First Decade)"(1996), "After Crying 6" (1997) y "Almost Pure Instrumental" (1998). Pero sin duda el mas destacable fue su anteultima placa: “After Crying Show”, de concepto donde el tema principal es manifestar su protesta contra la política imperialista de los Estados Unidos rechazando el uso de la guerra para combatir el terrorismo.
Una banda imperdible que ha marcado tendencia para algunos y para muchos otros ha hecho vanguardia. "Overground Music" quizás no sea de lo mejor de After Crynig pero es una muy buena carta de presentación, para quienes ignoraban su existencia.
Alvaro Beasi

Tremendo disco, no se lo pierdan por ningún motivo. No vos a copiar demasiados comentarios porque no hace falta, créanme que si bien hay cosas aún mejores de ésta banda, esto está de maravillas. Una banda fuera de serie y que aún muchos desconocen. Y creo que tenemos muchos otras banda innovadoras, de todas partes del mundo, para traerles...

The end of the cold war has let us discover the Eastern Europe. After Crying are a very big surprise. The use of cellos, flutes, cymbals together with a great piano and quite good vocals is amazing. This is not symphonic prog, as the sound is pretty acoustic, but you can find lot of ideas in this album. It's not only an experiment. The first track immediately leads you into their musical world, where strings are rhythmic and flute and piano do a great job. The album flows as it was a suite, even if it's not a concept album. Madrigal love can be intended as a mini-suite that leads to the impressive final track. The vocals are the weaker part of this album, but not so bad. 4/5 stars
Luca

It’s always a risk to delve into the back catalog of a band that you’ve discovered long after they began recording, but that’s what happened for me in the case of After Crying. I’m pretty sure ‘De Profundis’ was the first thing I heard from these guys, and that was courtesy of one of my kids. I found them to be instantly likeable and have enjoyed them ever since, although the infrequency of their releases has been a disappointment.
I guess it was because of this lack of new material that eventually their earlier works caught my eye. This one in particular was a no-brainer, as I always want to find out what a band started out to be since it helps to explain how they evolved the way they did. In the case of After Crying, the progression is remarkably transparent as one works their way chronologically through each of the band’s albums. This first one has much of the classical, almost chamber-like style of their later work, but it is also marked at times with just a bit of inconsistency, which is not at all surprising for a debut. Also, the English vocals really detract from the overall experience, and while they don’t ruin the album at all for me, I can see where some would be put off by this. Otherwise this is a top-quality offering from a group of consummate musicians, and a completely enjoyable piece of art to experience.
This is the only Hungarian music I have, and I suspect it isn’t indicative of the more common styles in that part of the world. These guys are almost definitely classically- trained, but they also have been strongly influenced by Zappa, probably the earlier British symphonic masters, maybe a little jazz, and possibly even a bit by Canterbury music. It’s a fantastic blend of sounds that doesn’t get old even after several dozen plays.
If I had to rate the album solely on the first track I would give it four stars, maybe even five. The band’s first impression is a strong and positive one, opening with a bevy of classic sounds via cello, viola, bassoon, oboe, and of course the elegant Vedras piano. This may be a tribute to Zappa, but the strong chamber tenor blends avant-garde and classical music in a way that would have caught both Fripp and Gabriel’s ears ‘back in the day’. Beautiful stuff.
But like I said this album is a bit uneven, and the Kermit the Frog-like vocals that open “Don't Betray Me” are quite a mood shift. The piano is again dominant, and the trombone is a nice touch that gives this a somber but not depressing tone. Overall I would say this is a good composition that would have been great without the vocals.
The vocals improve a bit on “Confess Your Beauty” since this has more of a theatrical feel to it so the accent is more complimentary, but this is the one track where the weak production is most apparent. The band definitely figured out the whole studio thing by the time the decade had run out, but they are still figuring it out on this one.
The whole “Madrigal Love” sequence is the highlight of the album, but again the vocals are a bit of a distraction. Can you imagine Fish fronting this band? Or even better, Alan Parsons Project’s Eric Woolfson. That would have been something. Regardless, the orchestral instrumentation is nearly flawless, most notably the flute and oboe progressions.
The band closes with a preview of things to come on the ten-minute plus “Shining (...to the Powers of Fairyland)”, a lengthy and sometimes complex chamber piece with beautiful female vocals. The trombone here is a bit out-of-place, but overall this is a bit closer to the sound of the next several albums and a great upbeat closer to a very decent debut.
I don’t think I’ve heard anything from these guys that I didn’t like, but this is not their strongest effort by any means. Still, the music breathes new life into the symphonic rock style at a time when it was in serious decline, and the album’s title coming on the heels of the fall of communism in Hungary is inspiring and uplifting. This is an album that any serious symphonic rock fan should have in their collection, and it easily stands on its own as a solid four star effort. Highly recommended, as is everything I’ve heard from this band.
Bob Moore

AFTER CRYING made their debut in 1990 proposing something different in prog rock.The band hadn't a drummer or a guitar player and the album was based on the good piano,flute and trombone playing.Parts of the album remind me of RIO,part of them have a jazz flavior but the main thing to watch are the heavily classical influenced interplay of the band.They seem like a classical/rock orchestra at times.The female vocals are so excellent and the only negative thing are the male vocals without being annoying.A MASTERPIECE OF CLASSICAL MUSIC WITH AN INTENSE PROG ROCK FEELING...
apps79

This album is very impressive to me and even though this band is considered symphonic prog, I'd rather call this album as eclectic or avant-garde in nature. I have known After Crying for so long and have listened to some of their later albums. Only recently I got a chance to have this album and was impressed at first spin for two things: music composition and sonic production - all of them are excellent. Why do I stress on composition? It's merely due to the facts that the overall album do not sound to produce what is so called "catchy" melodies. Well, I know that this is very subjective. A friend of mine who has not been posed yet to prog commented that Genesis' "Firth of Fifth" is not catchy while to me it's so catchy.
Impressive debut album!
The good thing about this album is how dynamic each song in the album in terms of tempo as well as style changes. There are different time signatures in even the shortest segment of the music. The opening track "European Things (Hommage à Frank Zappa) « (8:27) demonstrates exactly what I mean. Observe how the time signatures change quite frequently throughout the song while the melody is sacrificed. However, with the lack of melody, you can enjoy the music with the harmonies among instruments and vocals produce throughout the song. As the title implies, this is definitely a Zappa music interpreted uniquely by the band. The use of string section and piano combined with energetic singing is wonderful. "Don't Betray Me" (3:02) is a mellow track with powerful vocal and piano as main rhythm section while trumpets accentuate the song. The ending part with cello / violins combined with trumpets is nice.
"Confess Your Beauty" (6:50) is probably a catchy song with nice piano work at the opening part followed by energetic singing. Again, the band demonstrates, despite this is a debut album, its maturity in music composition. The piano and string section combination plus piano solo and violin solo are all great. "Madrigal Love Part One" (2:14) shares similar vein with "Don't Betray Me", using piano and vocal as main component. ". ...to Black... "(5:05) according to my preference is a catchy song, sung beautifully by the lead vocalist. "Madrigal Love Part Two (Over Every Sea)" (3:00) brings the music into faster tempo with nice acapella followed by great piano work. "Madigral Love Part Free" (0:51) concludes the epic with piano and acoustic work followed with acapella in the vein of Gentle Giant. It flows wonderfully through great piano work to "Shining (...to the Powers of Fairyland)" (10:44) which features flute and female vocal. According to my book, this song is quite catchy in its melody line as well as the rhythm section by piano as well as string section. The solo section in the middle of the track using brass instruments followed by high register notes female vocal singing has made me rating this track with a true five-star.
Overall, this album is more avant-garde in nature than a symphonic one. Yes, I agree that the band uses many symphonic instruments like string section and piano but the way the music flows, it sounds to me more into eclectic type of music. One thing for sure this album is very intense with classical music components. So, if you love classical music, you might love this album as well. Four and half stars rating. Highly recommended. Keep on proggin' ..!
Gatot Widayanto

My CD collection is not that huge, but not that small either, I've got around 500 titles on the shelf (by July 2013). When you have a considerable amount of CDs (LPs) it is very common that you overlook some titles. That's just what happened with the first After Crying album.
I have had Overground Music (1990) for 4 years now and I couldn't remember details about it. Because of this I decided to re-run over my collection and mini-review everything.
After Crying is a Hungarian ensemble that is just unique. Brilliantly unique!
This 'band' (if you can call them a band) is not an ordinary every day Prog, no, they're different. To begin with, their lineup: Csaba Vedres (vocals and piano), Péter Pejtsik (vocals and cello), Kristóf Fogolyán (flute), Zsolt Maroevich (viola). On this album also played Judit Andrejszki (vocals), Pál Makovecz (trombone), Ottó Rácz (oboe), Aladár Tüske (bassoon) and Balázs Winkler (trumpets). Can you see your everyday Prog? No! Cause it isn't!
Each classical instrument takes the role of the electric ones with superb results. Like in the Jazz Club feeling of 'European Things (Hommage à Frank Zappa)'. They also have 2 vocalists, which is the fact that always amused me. Csaba is the main one while Péter gives his unique interpretation to the 'ballads' 'Don't Betray Me' and 'Madrigal Love Part One'. You've got to love their heavy accents, it gives After Crying's music an unique charm.
I really can't find any weak track on Overground Music (1990). Even the silly 'Madigral Love Part Free' has its role.
My thought after listening Overground Music (1990) is that After Crying IS Prog! I mean, many times you listen to a Prog album that has less Progresive Music than in one of the songs of this guys. After Crying is more Prog than 95% of the Prog Metal bands, for example.
Overground Music (1990) is gorgeous, hypnotic, with intriguing lyrics, beautiful and above all? unique! Essential!
Diego Camargo

Every AFTER CRYING album I have seems to sound different from the next one even though we always get that classical vibe with cello, viola, bassoon, trombone, trumpet, aboe and flute. Add bass, synths and piano along with vocals and there you have it. No guitar or percussion here makes this sort of unique i'd say. This is different from the rest of their recordings for a couple of reasons. First the vocals are in English instead of their native toungue (Hungarian) like the following albums, and there is this humour that brings Canterbury to mind at times with the lighter vocals. I thought of WIGWAM at times as well. Check out the title of this album "Overground Music" instead of a popular term "Underground Music".
The first track "European Things" is a tribute to Frank Zappa. It's light and classical sounding with piano and strings standing out.The male vocals remind me of WIGWAM. Flute before 3 minutes followed by female vocal melodies. Piano and flute lead late as well. "Don't Betray Me" features male vocals,piano and aboe but we do get horns joining in as well. "Confess Your Beauty" opens with fast paced piano and vocals.The vocals get pretty passionate from time to time. Flute and strings come and go. I really like the strings after 3 minutes. Piano and bass take over 4 1/2 minutes in.
"Madrigal Love Part One" is a short vocal/piano piece. "...To Black..." features more vocals and piano but aboe, strings and other sounds help out here. Horns before 2 1/2 minutes. "Madrigal Love Part Two (Over Every Sea)" is more uptempo with vocals and piano. Some brief horns after a minute then female vocals before 2 minutes. Male vocals return later. "Madrigal Love Part Free" is quite jazzy to start but it changes quickly. "Shining (...To The Powers Of Fairyland)" has this heavier than usual opening then it turns pastoral with female vocals. Piano and strings only before 3 minutes. Aboe after 4 minutes in a beautiful section. Female vocals are back 6 minutes in. That opening heavier sound is back after 8 1/2 minutes.
It took a while but I do really like this. It's challenging yet whimsical, complex yet humerous.The vocals take some abuse from reviewers but for me it's part of the charm.
John Davie

This is a debut album! I can think of few if any debut albums that have this kind of maturity of composition and performance (Hybris?) Too much is demerited for the heavily accented voices of the male vocalists--especially since one has a voice remarkable for its similarity to that of legend JOHN WETTON. Balance that with the virtuosic voice of female singer Judit Andrejszki, and the virtuosic play from all of the other instrumentalists but then add the fact that this music is deeply engaging, often amusing, and incredibly creative in its conception and I cannot conclude anything other than I am listening to the fully realized work of master music makers. If you disagree, then I challenge you: You try to perform it!
There is a valid issue raised with respect to this music's inclusion into the "rock" world: There are no guitars and very little bass-and-drum rhythm. But then, where does it belong? Jazz? Avant-garde? Post Rock? Neo-classical?
Favorite selections: the "Madrigal Love" series (22:02) especially the 11-minute "Shining" finale (10/10); the gorgeous piano playing and John Wetton voice stylings of "Confess Your Beauty" (6:53) (9/10), and; the Crimsonesque opener, "European Things" (8:28 (8/10).
Also, as a gift to the world in a period virtually bereft of quality symphonic "rock" music, this stands out. Brave, impassioned, and unusual. To this day. It is one for the ages. An inspiring reminder to those listening in 1990 (and listening still): "This is what music can do!!"
W. A. Fisher

After Crying always seem to do something different with each of their albums, and whilst this does mean they're one of the most original and inventive prog bands out there it also means that liking one album doesn't necessarily mean you'd like the others from the same period of their career. Whilst I am very fond of the album after this one, Overground Music falls flat with me. Part of it is the vocals, which take on a whimsical and overly twee tone that is far removed from the wonderful use of vocals which subsequent releases prove the band is capable of; another part is that the compositions tend to meander and feel rather aimless. Either way, it's not a favourite.
W. Arthur

This is actually the debut album from After Crying. I've had heard them on the broadcast of the NEARfest '01 (I think) and they impressed me very much with their sound of progressive rock with a heavy influence of classical music. "Overgorund Music" has those elements but with a very very less impressive songwriting level, as this is their first album one can notice that this is a band in their formative years. I would not recommend this records for beginners
Victor Josue Salazar Z.

Overground Music is a very special piece of art indeed, it is one of the closest music I have heard that reminds me how powerful arts can be.
The musicians certainly achieved the perfect balance among talent and their instruments, this means that between the subconscious feeling and the technique, they have revealed its true meaning on expression.
After Crying just did an incredible unbelievable virtuous album but at the same time it contains the passion that it needs to include sensitivity.
This record opened, unconsciously, the path for me through arts, and somehow awakened a part of me that gave me the chance to understand and discover the art of playing the piano from inside-out and it helped me become a self-taught pianist.
Confess Your Beauty instrumental section is a masterpiece that has transcended the idea of a solo section in a song to me... behind the inspiration for that section is where relies the mysterious ingenious and intellect of men...some fantastic achievements like this one gives a certain meaning to our existence.
Listening to this album is when I remember that the journey really began. It might work as well for others and I hope it does. Many records have helped to awake the "ears of my ears" but after this album it became a certainty. I really believe that albums like this one teaches us the most valuable things in life.
Highly Recommended!
"What moves men of genius, or rather what inspires their work, is not new ideas, but their obsession with the idea that what has already been said is still not enough."
Eugene Delacroix

AFTER CRYING is a band of classically educated musicians who play an excellent quality symphonic progressive rock and IMO do it with a good sense of humor. Overground Music, their debut and perhaps the best album is notable by the absence of traditional rock instruments such as guitars and drums. The voice (male) sometimes sounds in a dissonance with what musicians play and it amuses much. It feels like a vagrant singer met the chamber orchestra and said: OK guys you're gonna play your stuff and I gonna sing, well..., something... And it works! Shining is the most beautiful and reminds HACKETT's Shadow of the Hierophant. Highly recommended, especially for prog purists!
Groon

Ahh Overground Music; I accidentally stumbled upon this great band around half a year ago not knowing anything about them. At the time I was getting into newer symphonic prog, and Overground was the highest rated on the site. I had no idea this one would become to one of my favorite albums, but now I've said repeatedly that this is one of the few albums in my collection that transcends even most masterpieces. This is probably one of the most listened-to albums in my collection but there's just so much going on in here that I never tire of it.
From the beginning to the end there isn't a dull moment I can think of. This is very progressive music. Lots of classical influence, but they still manage to create a sound and atmosphere of their own. The eclectic use of instruments always keeps me on edge. From the great opener European Things (Hommage a Frank Zappa), a song that would surely earn the approval of the man himself, you can tell you're in for quite a ride. The song is constantly changing pace and melody, yet manages to always sound fresh and upbeat throughout the 9 minutes.
Their laid-back songs such as Don't Betray Me and ...to Black... sounds just as good as their more upbeat side. And remains just as progressive. Even in the 3 minute Don't Betray Me there's a lot going on. Confess Your Beauty is simply amazing, the song is so well written and ohhh that wonderful cello... The Madrigal Love trilogy works great as a whole. I especially love part 2, which makes great use of the trumpets. Part 3 has an interesting jazzy-swing feel to it, which even at under a minute always catches my ear. The Shining is another magnificent one, and is as great a closer as European Things is an opener. It seamlessly changes from ethereal to beautiful, many times encompassing both. The very end of the song has some great inspiring trumpets for a perfect close to a perfect album.
I can't review this album without mentioning the amazing playing of trained classical pianist Vedres Csaba (who regrettably left the band a few years and albums later). His upbeat playing often sounds like two separate people playing simultaneously. Without a doubt it is the glue that holds the rest of the band together, as there's nearly always no percussion section. Its almost always there, and always fresh and entertaining. Though it doesn't come close to undermining the rest of the band, the playing and solos throughout are always fantastic no matter where they're coming from.
The album has a lot of strengths, really all one could ask for. Great progressive songwriting, atmosphere, and equally good musicianship. The reason I think its so underrated is because of the vocals. At first listening they seem almost out of place. The forced English sounds strange at times, the band eventually fixed this by returning to Hungarian vocals though. Even so, these vocals grew on me profoundly. I realized its a very unique voice, and in my opinion it works well with the music. Now when I listen it contributes to the all around atmosphere. I think if looked at from that perspective people will enjoy this album as much as I do...immensely!
Recommended to any fans of symphonic prog/art rock, as well as fusion fans (especially fans of those fusion bands with a classical element).
John

This is the first (on CD) and one of the best of them. At earlier times they have got some demo-like works published on cassette only:
1. Opus 1 - 1989 (Live, 2 longer and 1 shorter "jamming" of cello, flute, piano) 2. 1989 (It is a real demo, and their first CD is much better) 3. Concert 1991 (A 2 CD long live performance. This is the top work of AC with Csaba Vedres on piano!!! Some parts of the concert published later on the second CD of "Első évtized" (The First Decade) with mixtured tracks.)
This work (sorry, my english is not pretty good enough to write long reviews): - Atmosphere: 9.5 - Creativity/Progressivity: 10 - Performance/Musician skills: 8.5 (The vocal part of the music is "a little bit weak") - Variety: 9 - Lasting appeal/Depth (pithy): 10 - Words: 9 (In the hungarian version of the songs it is 10)
Tracks: 10, 9, 10, 9, 9, 9.5 (Madrigal Love two + free), 8.5 Average: 9.3/2 = 4.65 = 5/5 stars
Marcos Medve

OVERGROUND MUSIC......even the title sounds interesting...
A very special piece of music indeed, the closest music i have heard that grabbed the pincel in the middle... a famous methaphore that tells you that the balance between the subconcient feeling and the technique will reveal its true meaning on expression.
After Crying just did an incredible unbelievable virtuous album but at the same time with the passion and the sentimental feeling it needed to be coloured.
This record years ago opened inconciently the path to me through arts, comic book art, Picasso, Salvador Dalí, Caspar David Friedrich, just to mention the popular ones.
Confess Your Beauty instrumental section is a piece that trascended the instruments and the time of the soloing... behind the inspiration for that section is were relies the misterious ingenious and intellect of men...gives certain fantastic meaning to our existence.
This is more a work of art, than a Symphonic Progressive album, inside its frames i would say.
The most interesting thing in progressive music apart from the wank fest pirotecnic soloings and stuff; is that there in this genre is were wise and most knowledge musicians might appear.
This record showed me the difference between a musician and an artisti...Scott Henderson is a musician, Vedres Csaba is an artist...
There are discs where you enjoy as a hobbie "i listen to music, music is my life blah blah" and cds like this one that teaches you the most valuable things of life...
I often get the "you are always listening weird hungarian stuff, and music from poland, finland , just to say you know unpopular music" obviously ignorants might think its like that...
But the real thing is that i have learned so much from music, that i want to learn more...it can begin in cds like this one the journey...
This is certain a jewel
"Daría todo lo que sé, por la mitad de lo que ignoro." René Descartes*
Many records have waken the ears of my ears, and the eyes of my eyes...too many maybe..but this was and is one of the first that helped that to happen...Well, not my first review on this album...its been a while though.
I just want to highlight this is maybe the most incredible symphonic string sound i ever heard, if there's any symphonic solo that could beat "confess your beauty" i wouldnt believe it. The only "negative" thing about the cd is that you have to get used to vocals that actually has to do with Hungarian musical culture(they have this like low tone voices).
Highly Recommended for any symphonic prog lover that always wanted to know what would happened if keith emerson played with zappa.
4.9/5.
Franko

Total Agreement Rick Barrel! This is indeed an acoustic hurricane played by a bunch of extremely talented fellows from hungary! These fellows play so well that they can actually switch styles in seconds, from classical chamber music to progressive rock to jazz and so on! These guys neither offer guitars nor drums, and they still manage to rock perfectly! I suggest you check this record! It's not another typical progressive rock record!
Dan Yaron

I actually discovered this outstanding band by accident at a record store, i asked the owner to put an album from emerson lake and palmer, and he got the wrong cd ..thank god he did. I couldnt ask more, this is like dream theater but instead of distorsion you have violins and cellos! Is amazing!... These Guys are really great...Confess your Beauty instrumental part just knocked me down. I always thought classical music were boring...especially when they added flutes...the flutes part in after crying are so powerfull. You have a especial band using special instruments, very unique. Songs like European Things and Shining shows what symphonic progressive is all about. This is my favourite After Crying album, i've listened to it thousands of times and never get bored or found anything to criticize(maybe some lyrics arent at the level of the instrumental talent they have). Their music is complex and you have to be very open minded to appreciate their work, especially prog-metal fans like me.
I cant give this album less then 5/5 stars. The two previous reviews from this albums are definitely right.
Franko Rudess

No words necessary, just one: MASTERPIECE. An absolute masterpiece, an acoustic hurricane came from hungary to renew the prog scene. "Confess your beauty" is a new classic, for me the best progrock composition in the last two decades. And how to define "The Shining"? All the songs are pure gems. Their debut quickly entered the heaven of Progressive. A must! 5 stars? If I could, I would have given 6!
dusk73

Desde Hungría con amor. Háganle un favor a sus oídos y en este día de miércoles disfruten de esta banda. Se lo agradecerán sus tímpanos, sus neuronas, su corazoncito y hasta sus papilas gustativas. Otro discazo en el blog y ahora voy a querer más de esta banda.





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