Redjy Emond — Sphere
((Not on label) no#, 1996, CD)
by Alain Lachapelle, 1997-02-01:
Redjy Emond is a keyboard player from Quebec. He is a newcomer on the prog rock scene and while the pieces found on this CD constitute his very first offering, he nevertheless culminates many years of classical studies, which gives the music on Sphere a very strong background displayed mainly in the richness of the developments and the dexterity used in achieving them. This is keyboard music as in 'keyboard trio' in the progressive rock sense, appealing immediately to fans of ELP, Ars Nova, Lehmejum and others. What is different, in a way, with Emond's style, is the anchoring of melodies and the explorations done, surprising the listener with sudden, harmonically modified references to other segments. This structural approach, always supported by a rich and excellent palette of colorful orchestrations, gives Sphere its very own charm and balance between gothic archetyped aggressive keyboard trio riffs and a more enriched approach making way towards admirable developments. The music is always very dynamic, very up-front, making of Sphere a highly recommended album to keyboard trio music amateurs and to progressive fans in general. An album that is enjoyably listened to again and again.
by Jeff Melton, 1997-02-01:
Sphere is a complete one-man show by a keyboardist whose primary style is drawn from a very watered down Emerson (e.g. Keith on the last ELP: injured and should have waited) or Yanni on .5mg of speed. Actually the disc is pretty listenable if a bit hokey, since the compositions are pretty predictable. A few of the tracks are mostly pedestrian walkthroughs of well-traveled roads in the symphonic style. The suite of 11 songs is pretty and and only the slightest bit challenging. Emond's digital piano playing is much like Wakeman as well, sometimes incorporating motifs from a 20s melodrama. Even the title track (split into two parts on the running order) is not too awe inspiring, but nice just the same. A few tracks which represent the disc: "Periodos," which has a flashy Moog-type solo without the panache of a Wakeman lead. The "Ancestral" suite shows a slight bit more development, but falls short of reaching a memorable goal. Emond's keyboard arsenal consists of EMU Proteus, Roland, Korg, and Kurzweil state of the art stuff. The synth drums sound a bit sterile but that seems to be the trend. Wish I had a bit more to say, but not much to keep me interested past a few listens. Sorry Redgy.
by Mike McLatchey, 1997-02-01:
This is one of those albums that contains a one man rock band mostly controlled by synthesizers. I'm not too fond of the robotic tendencies of this way of going at it, yet Redjy is a more tasteful musician than most. His ideas are unusual and dissonant, his melodies meandering and often menacing. He's obviously trying to come up with a unique style of electronic rock, yet his keyboard talents would be more impressive in a band situation. In fact some vocals and a lot of guitar would have done this album a wealth of good. Still, there's enough tonal variation and impressive melodies to make it worth a listen. Recommended to Ars Nova or ELP fans more so than others.
Related artist(s): Redjy Emond
Keith Tippett RIP – One of the giants of British jazz has left us. Keith Graham Tippetts, known professionally as Keith Tippett, died today at the age of 72. His work from the late 60s into the 70s and beyond includes some of the greatest jazz produced in the UK, and stands as an impressive oevre to this day. » Read more
Phil May of The Pretty Things RIP – We were saddened to learn that Phil May, lead singer and founding member of The Pretty Things, has died at the age of 75. The band's 1968 album S.F. Sorrow is one of the enduring classics of the psychedelic era, and the group existed in various forms until finally retiring in 2018. » Read more
Jorge Santana RIP – Jorge Santana, noted guitarist, leader of the band Malo and brother to Carlos Santan, died on May 14 at the age of 68. Jorge and Carlos worked together on a number of occasions, though Jorge's career was centered around Malo, solo work, and with Fania All-Stars. » Read more
Shindig Festival Goes Lock-Down – Here's what they're saying: It's A Happening Thing! The Shindig! Magazine Lockdown Festival. In our days of no large gatherings of people, maybe it's still possible to have a music festival. Shindig! Magazine is giving it a go with a multi-artist streaming extravaganza on Saturday April 25. » Read more
Phil Manzanera / 801 - Live at Manchester University – 801, lead by guitarist Phil Manzanera, deserve a pretty lofty place in the Prog hall of fame. The band was a veritable supergroup, fronted by Phil and Brian Eno, blending quirky pop songs with... (2000) » Read more