Norway's Wobbler is not living in the past with their style of progressive rock; they are the past. If there was a subdivision of the genre for 'roots' progressive rock, then Wobbler's third album, Rites at Dawn would certainly fit. Without apologies and little discussion about the current status or definition of prog, Wobbler merely chooses to invoke the giants of yesteryear in the music, right down to Lars Fredrik Froislie's analog synthesizer and Morten Eriksen's Rickenbacker bass. King Crimson, Gentle Giant, Genesis, and mostly Yes echo through the soundscape of Rites at Dawn.
The work is bookended by the intro, Lucid, and the outro Lucid Dreams. In between we escape through an audio time tunnel to the 1970's. La Bealtaine give us our first introduction into roots prog: a light, yet up tempo, song driven by airy guitar with good vocal harmonies. This Past Present starts very light with vocals and acoustic guitar with some internal up beat moments. A strong bass line and uplifting guitar solo direct to a big finish. A Faerie's Play offers a symphonic foundation with engaging moments of lively provocation.
The signature pieces are the two longest on Rites at Dawn. In Orbit is quite old school and, of all the songs, reminds most of early Yes. It's marked by a strong collaboration by the musicians offering a surreal, sometimes breathtaking, excursion into the depths of early progressive rock. Later, The River does much the same. Yet it fools you early with its lilting symphonic measure, only to really open up in the second half with a grand experimentation into classic melodic prog.
Call Wobbler's Rites at Dawn vintage or roots progressive rock. There are many bands who attempt to resurrect the past in a modern way. Wobbler simply plays classic prog, in its earliest form, in a fresh, imaginative, and entertaining way. Very recommended.
Call Wobbler's Rites at Dawn vintage or roots progressive rock. Wobbler plays classic prog, in its earliest form, in a fresh, imaginative, and entertaining way.
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