Steve Thorne

'Emotional Creatures: part one'

(Giant Pea Electric records)

MARK: 93/100


First part of a story told in this debut CD of a Prog superband as witnessed by those who appear in the songs' credits along with prolific singer and songwriter and of course influence this project with their main bands' styles; from Tony Levin (King Crimson, Peter Gabriel, Liquid Tension), to Geoff Downes (Asia, Yes, Buggles), and Nick D' Virgilio (Spock's Beard, Genesis, Tears for Fears, up to members of both IQ and Jadis.
The lyrics deal with ironical polemics concerning the USA's governative policy (the tender lullaby "God Bless America"), the fragility of human relationships (the dreamlike "Ten Years"), the persevering dangers for life awaiting all of us around the corner ("Last Time").

The keyboards have huge place in all of the songs and make the difference together with the excellent vocal lines in "Last Time", in which Thorne achieves his interpreting apex; This track includes a fiery 70's Prog finalé with a crescendo of drums and keys.
The enwrapping bass makes a splendid work in "Well Outta That", "Ten Years" and in the instrumental "Every Second Counts", while the candidacy for single goes to "Julia", thanks to its indelible chorus. Moreover, "Therapy" mixes vocal patterns a là Phil Collins and a bit of Extreme's.
For those who think Steve's songwriting is weak all the time, I say go and listen to the precious and peculiar "Gone", based on a refrain that is comparable to a typical Uriah Heep's, around which a few Westcoast Rock and Country elements are added around.

Finally, a well-balanced recording and mixing stress out every instrument, comprising the most delicate ones (mandolin, flute, nylon guitar and music box).
The second part has already been completed and if it's up to the first, we can't but rejoice for the south of England's very inspired polinstrumentist's endeavours, who isn't sparing his energies, being the founding member of Colony Earth and the Salamander Project. Fans of Prog Rock, come forward! This is the must-have for April if you just buy one CD a month.