Men Who Climb Mountains
Its been three years since the last Pendragon album. To be honest I hadn't checked in on them in quite some time so it was interesting to listen to their latest - it was very different from what I expected. Guitarist Nick Barrett has gone all Roger Waters on us - he wrote all the music and lyrics - so this really has evolved very much into a personal vehicle for him. The usual bandmates of Peter Gee and Clive Nolan are on board and now joined by new drummer Craig Blundell. Men Who Climb Mountains is a concept album but Barrett isn't spelling it out - you're going to have to work at this one. The musical mission of the band has clearly changed over the years. Don't have any hesitation - its full on prog but much more contemporary sounding. The symphonic flourishes from the old days aren't quite so obvious - which isn't to say you won't notice Clive Nolan's presence. Its simply that this is a bit more of a guitar driven vehicle than decades ago and Barrett's mournful solos have that nice Hackett-esque feel that always draws my attention. I have to say I'm impressed. Highly recommended.