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Ian Parry’s Consortium Project
Released: 1999, Inside Out Music
I will admit that I am pretty new to Ian Parry. Before this CD came along I had no idea who Ian Parry was. I saw this CD in my local record store and I then went online and found a song clip. Pretty good stuff so I went out and bought the disc and it was a wise choice. Ian Parry’s Consortium Project is just that, a consortium of some of the best musicians in progressive metal today. Ian Parry made his debut in 1985 with the band Hammerhead. He has also played in Mono Pacific with Zak Starkey, son of Ringo Starr of the Beatles, and in Airrace with Jason Bonham, son of John Bonham. Parry’s big break came as a member of the band Vengeance who released their farewell album in 1994. Ian released his first solo CD in 1993 titled "Symphony of Dreams" and followed that up with "Artistic Licence". 1995 saw the release of Parry’s 3rd CD "Through The looking Glass" .In 1996 Parry joined Dutch band Elegy and has recorded 3 CDs with them titled "Primal Instinct" ‘96, "State of Mind" ‘97 and "Manifestation of Fear" in 1998. "Consortium Project" was released in 1999 and saw many guest performances including Stephan Lill –– Vandenplas, Tamas Szekeres, Thomas Youngblood –– Kamelot, Guitar hero Patrick Rondat & Elegy Drummer Dirk Bruinenberg.
"Ian Parry’s Consortium Project" contains 13 tracks including the Japanese bonus track "Humanitarian" and a demo version of "Change Breeds Contempt". Parry himself writes all the songs on this disc including the music, lyrics and vocal melodies. The CD opens with the track "House of Cards" This is an up tempo track which features Patrick Rondat on guitar. Parry himself plays keyboards on the disc and adds a unique atmosphere to this track with his ivories. "Evil World" is probably my favourite track on the CD. Parry lets loose with the vocals and the track relies more on guitar work than the ever present keyboards to carry the song. The CD is a great mixture of power and progressive with lots of hard rock hooks thrown in for good measure. "The Garden of Eden" is a hook laden progressive tinged track that will have you singing the chorus all day long. The CD also contains one amazing ballad in the track "A Miracle is All We Need". Patrick Rondat’s guitar playing perfectly compliments the piano of Parry. A great track!! Thom Youngblood of Kamelot lends his guitar talents to "Change Breeds Contempt" which is probably the fastest song on the disc. Youngblood also plays on the Japanese bonus track "Humanitarian" making these 2 of the hardest cuts on the CD. "Criminals and Kings" showcases Parry’s great vocals and the great drumming of Dirk Bruinenburg. Overall 13 great tracks of progressive metal.
Ian Parry manages to keep his musical vision coherent considering the large number of musicians who appear on this CD. In the end the music is all the better for the outside input. Parry writes all the material but musicians such as Thom Youngblood and Patrick Rondat manage to leave their individual mark on their respective pieces. This is definitely a CD which can bridge the gap between the progressive metal world and those music fans who can’t necessarily get into the keyboards and arrangements of some of the more progressive acts. Parry has created an album that is one half melodic, one half progressive and all metal.
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