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Oceans Of Night
Released: 2014, Indie
There are a certain class of musician in my mind who create music and art for the sake of being creative. Arguably all musicians are creative but there are those who just quietly make music, ignore trends and keep going regardless if they get fame and fortune. In my mind, Scott Mosher is one of those guys.
Ten years ago on this site I reviewed a couple of his solo albums and for whatever crazy reason we lost touch over the years. He kept going releasing another solo album in 2006 and then switching over to more of a band environment with his project Oceans Of Night. MIDNIGHT RISING is the band third album following, THE SHADOWHEART MIRROR in 2009 and DOMAIN in 2011.
MIDNIGHT RISING is a very fine example of a great blend of Progressive Metal and Hard Rock with a nice mix of middle-era Fates Warning and perhaps middle era Queensryche or even Magnum. The CD is a very nice package because mainman Mosher has always had good attention to detail, layout and design. The colorful booklet includes lyrics, liner notes and a message from Scott. I define this as more of a project. Halfway between his solo albums but not quite a full touring band as Mosher plays everything by himself. Vocals are provided by Scott Oliva, probably most well-known for being the vocalist of the admittedly obscure US Power Metal band Wind Wraith. His smooth voice carries the songs nicely and he does have a commanding vocal presence on cuts like ‘The Burning Sky’ and ‘Crashing Down’ which almost veers into Power Metal territory.
There are a number of guests on the album dropping by for a keyboard solo and so on. And the whole thing was mixed and mastered by Joey Vera cementing perhaps the Fates Warning connection. The ten-song, one hour album is all over the map in terms of composition as the songs range from three minutes to ten minutes. The keyboard heavy album brings some fine progressive elements but does not forget the guitar either. The second cut, the title track, recalls a bit of Savatage with some really nice guitar work. There are some ambient passages on the keyboards reinforcing the connection to his solo albums as well. The tone and tempo is refined never too abrasive or fast but never dull, there is an nice, steady undercurrent of energy in the songs.
Not many bands try to make this type of Music as much, as the old elite guard of prog are thinning in ranks but I’m pleased that artists like Mosher and Oceans Of Night are keeping this sound and style alive. MIDNIGHT RISING is an excellent example of a style that is not really ‘cool’ (never has been) and the cool Metal kids would never touch this with a ten-foot pole, and that’s why fans of truly inspired and impassioned music devoid of trends or pretensions, should check this out.
1. The Haunted Mind
2. Midnight Rising
3. Critical Mass
4. The Burning Sky
5. Crashing Down
6. Gone Forever
7. Is This Who We Are
8. A World Born of Fire
9. Wherever You Are
10. Reach Me
Scott Mosher-Guitar, Bass, Keyboards
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