This is a tough one for me. How can i be a critic to emotions, loss and uniquity? I don’t even know how to state about the decision of the band continuing after the loss of their charismatic vocalist Mike Baker some months ago. Everybody else would have called it a day, the union between the members of the band was something you don’t easily find nowadays.
They may never surpass the fact that their old friend is not with them anymore, but on the other hand, they stand before us just like true and honest professionals and they deliver us a great album called ”Digital Ghosts”. Consisting of seven songs in the usually known and beloved Shadow Gallery style, the quintet from Pensylvania delivers the goods for the sixth time in their history. Despite the heavy atmosphere and guitars, the album sounds poetic and like fresh water pouring from the clearest waterfall that comes to your mind. Baker’s successor named Brian Ashland, has a totally different voice but works quite well and fits suitably to the whole concept.
His help is tremendous if we imagine the skills of the other four members, don’t forget that we are talking about instrumental mastery individually and as a team work also. I liked this album very much, I also enjoyed it despite the songs’ long durations, it is easy to listen to (as far as an album of SG can sound easy) and I should give praise to the sound and production.
Albums like ”Carved In Stone” or ”Tyranny” happen only once but this one has maybe the best sound and it really suits them fine, after all, we like our music as heavier as it gets. I don’t know if the members of the band are haunted by the ghost of Mike Baker, but I surely know that up in heavens, there is a soul smiling and closing an eye on them, satisfied with what they achieved. Once you get the digipack edition, you will find some demos with Baker on vocals and some alternative versions of other songs. A must have for any prog fan.
|01. With Honor
04. Gold Dust
08. Two Shadows (Bonus Track)
09. Gold Dust (Demo) (Bonus Track)
10. In Your Window (Bonus Track
11. World of Fantasy (Demo) (Bonus Track)
|Brian Ashland – Vocals
Gary Wehrkamp – Guitar, Keyboards
Brendt Allman – Guitar
Carl Cadden – James – Bass, Vocals
Joe Nevolo – Drums