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While this website has become known for its in-depth album and concert reviews, the digest contains concise comments on new music our audience has either recommended or might enjoy. Click on album covers or label names for links to further information. Click on the title to view the article.

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Precious Baby CD Cover
Image The Silk 2002 

(23 June 2002) The first recording from The Silk, a pop-influenced progressive rock band from Belgium, is available on CD-R and is entitled Precious Baby (self-published (Belgium) 2001). The band are presently searching for a label. Fronted by singer Jo Duchamps, Bernard Wauters (guitar, djembe), Alain Delsaux (guitar), Marc Brasselet (drums) and Jacques Duchateau (bass) complete the lineup. The band's live performances span a range of venues and festivals and include supporting Seven Reizh (review).

Listeners will immediately be drawn to Jo Douchamps' vocals. Similarities to Curved Air's Sonja Kristina are obvious while others have made reference to Kate Bush, Nina Hagen and Janis Joplin. The mini-CD includes five short tracks in the three-four minute range and one longer piece running almost six minutes. The rich guitar excursions contrast Jo's soaring vocals in "Safe," whose lyrics lead to the title of the mini-CD, very much in a Curved Air style.

The percussive tune "Smell Of Success" clearly illustrates the virtuousity of Marc Brasselet and the electric guitar work of Alain Delsaux. Jo's vast vocal excursions illustrate a broad range of sounds and styles. Lush electric guitar arrangements provide a firm foundation for the Jo's sensitively sung lead vocal in a gentle ballad entitled "The Rats." This is contrasted by the progressively jazzy textures of "The Circus" where Jo's edgy vocals will remind listeners of Kate Bush's early recordings.

The band's jazz orientations continue to blend with progressive sounds in "The Great Escape." Crisp percussion and lush guitars, tempo changes and a vast range of vocal effects illustrate Jo's incredible diversity and give the song an experimental texture. This experimentation continues into the final track on the mini-CD entitled "Home Sweet Home," which in addition to the lyrical element is full of Jo's soaring vocalise and rhythmic guitar, bass and crisp percussion. Additional tempo and style changes contribute to the progressive texture of the track.

Acclaimed previously by Prog Resiste and other French language publications, The Silk is clearly emerging as a progressive-pop band. Reviews of their live performances have been as positive as those of their recordings. Click on the album cover to visit the band's website where further information, soundbites and videos can be viewed. Worth a journey, we found their mini-CD to be a very nice listen!

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