It’s nice to have progressive rock that harkens back to the heyday of the 70s. “Courting the Widow” has all the elements of a classic prog album. To start with, it has the voice of Nad Sylvan. There’s a good reason he toured with Steve Hackett on the Genesis Revisited tour. There’s no denying that Nad sounds like a mix of Peter Gabriel and Phil Collins but he has a very unique tone that can only be Nad Sylvan.
“Carry Me Home” starts things off with a hopping rhythm before slowing down and that’s when the mellotron comes in. The soloing on this track is just amazing, guitars and keyboards. None of them are excessive either. Very much like how old Genesis used to do it. These solos suit the song. It’s a beautiful start to a truly beautiful album. It’s an album full of wonderful passage, sweeping melodies and poetic lyrics.
The title track is another keyboard driven track that showcases Nad’s voice. When the track picks up the pace a bit, it sounds like a long lost track from “A Trick of the Tail.” The tracks are all a standard “prog” length with one 22 minute epic, “To Turn the Other Side.” To say this track has everything (flutes, electric pianos, mellotrons, guitar solos) would be an understatement. The key with any epic is if it feels too long and this one does not. It’s a long, amazing journey. The song has plenty of sections that flow seamlessly.
One track that is a bit “cheeky” is “Ship’s Cat.” I have no idea why we needed a song about a cat on a ship but we have one. Prog has always enjoyed some humor and fun so why not! I love all the keyboards used through out the album. Yes there’s plenty of mellotron but also piano and all the analog keyboards that make classic prog sound like it should. This is not an album about modern technology. Thankfully! It wouldn’t sound nearly as good.
It’s nice that someone still makes a prog rock album that sounds like old school prog. “Courting the Widow” sounds like if Genesis were magically transported in time to us from 1975. It’s unapologetically rooted in all the classic sounds from 40 years ago. For all of us who grew up with this music, it’s like going home.
1. Carry Me Home
2. Courting The Widow
3. Echoes Of Ekwabet
4. To Turn The Other Side
5. Ship’s Cat
6. The Killing Of The Calm
7. Where The Martyr Carved His Name
8. Long Slow Crash Landing