Alongside the Progressive bands and artists from the different parts of the country in Italy, Germany, Sweden, The Netherlands, and Indonesia to name a few, I’ve always have a soft spot for Norway. Bands like; Motorpsycho, White Willow, Hedvig Mollestad Trio, Panzerpappa, Tusmorke, and Krokofant to name a few, they really take it into different areas of Avant-Garde, Symphonic, Psych Folk, and Jazz Fusion like no other.
This year in 2015, I was blown away by an artist that carries the touches of the Progressive genre mixed in with some Psychedelic Folk thrown into the mix. And his name is Rhys Marsh. Rhys has released with his group, The Autumn Ghost from his four albums and he also worked with The Opium Cartel and Kaukasus that featured Mattias Olsson from Anglagard and White Willow on Drums, and Ketil Vestrum Einarsen from Motorpsycho on Woodwinds and Percussion.
His solo debut album entitled, Sentiment, is Rhys performing all of the instruments and exploring the darkness and the chance of hope throughout to see the light at the end of the tunnel. Opening track, Calling in the Night with the moody yet haunting tone between the mellotron and guitar introduction, gives the chills down the spine as Rhys’ vocals come in.
It’s almost reminded me of Anathema’s We’re Here Because We’re Here-era and you could tell that Rhys is almost paying homage to them on this track while the blaring yet thumping beat per minute of 119 on Burn the Brightest Day has this wonderful touch between early Black Sabbath and obscure prog group, Czar that almost wished Mike Pinder of the Moody Blues could have been a part of. And he would take the Mellotron into those areas to fit the vibe of the song.
Pictures of Ashes has this late ‘60s Beatle-sque vibe thrown in with a lukewarm yet climbing sound with the psychedelic beauty thanks to the acoustic rhythm section that Rhys brings into the sun. The Seventh Face has a powerful tempo that has a moderate beat with a haunting journey in search of the real self as the moving and comfort on The Ghost Ship brings to mind of Pink Floyd and Steven Wilson.
The percussions on the relaxing In The Sand gives it a dancing rhythm and not to mention the acoustic guitars going into almost an ancient traditional Egyptian dance and not to mention a lullaby as well. There is also a ‘80s synth-like electronic drum pattern for a perfect introduction along with the Rhodes-like keyboards before going into the mysterious voyages in Last November as the booming roar of the pounding drums and mellotron come out of nowhere with the slowed down ominous touch on Silver Light & Blackened Eyes that shows a touch of the Crimson sound.
The closer, Give Me (What You Need) is almost the trip back home to Earth with and into a chance for hoping to start a new beginning as the last few minutes go into a bursting of the synths and Mellotron that surround the ship for a chance of a new life with a reminiscent of Seventh Wave’s Star Palace of the Sombre Warrior.
I have listened to Rhys Marsh’s Sentiment about four times now and it is a real surprise to me that he has lot of potential in his music and lyrics. He is very much like a storyteller throughout the nine compositions he’s written. And also, this is my introduction to the label Autumnsongs Records. And I can’t wait to check out what is on the label and see where it would take me into the next side of the other room.
Sentiment, is for me, Rhys Marsh’s mind-blowing solo debut and I can’t wait to check out some of The Autumn Ghost and Kaukasas adventures to name a few. So if you love bands and artist like; Czar, Pink Floyd, Steven Wilson, and King Crimson, then I highly recommend checking out Rhys Marsh’s Sentiment.