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Gentle Knife: Clock Unwound
Gentle Knife - Clock Unwound CD Album Review

Gentle Knife: Clock Unwound

Progressive Rock
3.5/5.0

Norway's Gentle Knife is another one of those bands where my first question is, "where did that name come about?" Perhaps in their native Norwegian it means something more significant and interesting. Gentle Knife is melodic progressive rock collective, dropping their second album Clock Unwound. Collective is something of an understatement. Gentile Knife boasts eleven musicians in the band, playing a variety of instruments including guitars, synths, flute, saxophones, and drums. Surprisingly, they don't have any string instrument players.

Gentle Knife Band Photo

Gentle Knife

With no apologies, Gentle Knife's progressive rock is modern version of the classic melodic prog from the Seventies and later. It's hard not to hear the sounds Marillion, The Strawbs, Gentle Giant, or King Crimson in their music. Considering the assembly of talent, you can expect their song arrangements to fill a large musical canvas. Sometimes the breadth and depth of the canvas encompasses all players as within The Clock Unwound, the title and longest track. But dissecting the song a little more, you might sense that the synth and guitar lines have a larger place.

Alternatively, within the gentler Fade Away, the flute makes a larger statement. In Smother, a song with a near jazz swing groove, the horns rise throughout. Within Plans Askew, just about the midpoint a fine guitar solo precedes a soft interlude with flute, sax, and acoustic guitar. But the album is not without some slight disappointments. One is the vocals, which I found to be sometimes dull and lifeless, notably within Plans Askew and The Clock Unwound. Another stumble comes with plodding and depressing movement of Resignation, but more so from the lengthy and dull spoken word part at the start, which essentially set the tone for the entire song. It's not one of Gentle Knife's finer moments.

Nevertheless, Gentle Knife's Clock Unwound provides another interesting interpretation of classic melodic progressive rock for our time. Check it out.

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The Bottom Line

Gentle Knife's Clock Unwound provides another interesting interpretation of classic melodic progressive rock for our time. Check it out.

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