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Tassler, Steve - 2002 Alive Beyond Recognition




ARTIST: Tassler, Steve
ALBUM: Alive Beyond Recognition
LABEL: Sunsinger Records
SERIAL: 8083
YEAR: 2002

COUNTRY OF ORIGIN:

LINEUP: Steve Tassler - vocals, all instruments

TRACK LISTING: 01 Reunion * 02 Liquid Euphoria * 03 Firebright * 04 And Still She Wonders * 05 Bring The Promise * 06 Aeons Arrival * 07 Interregnum * 08 Foreshadow * 09 In The Night


Background
Starcastle fans will need no introduction to Steve Tassler, the former drummer returning to the musical fold many years later. This time with a series of songs which expand on his prowess as an overall musician rather than just as a drummer, as he was best known with Starcastle. The album title 'Alive Beyond Recognition' is quite aptly named, all things considered. Leaving the Starcastle fold at the beginning of the eighties, Steve went off to Med School to eventually become a Doctor. Music took a back seat for quite a while, but eventually the urge returned, and along with advances in technology, so came the resultant outpouring of musical ideas and expression: ultimately culminating in this 2002 release.


The Songs
'Reunion' opens up with some mystical keys, then settles down into some typical progressive grooves. 'Liquid Euphoria' has that epic feel to it - reminiscent of Starcastle Though the guitar phrasings are slightly heavier, the keyboard arpeggios obviously have Herb Schlidt's seal of approval. 'Firebright' has an array of different time changes, with multi-harmony vocal parts, and some stinging guitar lines part the way through. 'And She Still Wonders' melds acoustic sounds over a progressive theme, while 'Bring The Promise' has a near whimsical or carnival atmosphere to it. When you hear it you'll know what I mean. 'Aeons Arrival' an instrumental, takes us back to the debut Starcastle album, with a suitably bombastic approach last seen on 'Nova', though the keyboard lines through the middle have an Eddie Jobson feel to it, a la U.K. 'Interregnum' is the classic progressive piece: 13 minutes long and segmented into several passages. Winding it's way forward from an intro of keyboard dabbling, followed closely in the second phase by the Terry Luttrell like vocals from Steve. The third phase accelerates to a crescendo, then meanders out to the finish. The closer 'In The Night' has some Styx like harmonies to it, while of course the music settles nicely in that late seventies era, combining the styles of Styx and Supertramp rather well.


In Summary
Nine tracks, a couple of instrumentals, and more than enough to keep tried and true progsters happy. The album is a great entree for the new Starcastle project due very soon. And for those drummers out there who want to learn how to become progressive instrumentalists, take a chapter out of the book by Dr Tassler (MD).


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