Magnus, Nick

Nick Magnus was keyboardist with Steve Hackett and The Enid. He works for film and TV.
Magnus, Nick
Nick Magnus - Inhaling Green 2020 REMASTER

Artist: Nick Magnus
P: 1999 / 2020
Inhaling Green takes our hero even further than his previous album Straight On Till Morning which was definitely one of 1993's hidden gems. This new project sees Nick expanding his horizons in a variety of ways. The album opener Velociraptor is, unlike its title, no dinosaur of a track; instead it is a Hi Energy start to the proceedings with a superb synth rock track which even Genesis legend Tony Banks would be proud to call his own. This is in turn followed by the filmic beauty of Free The Spirit, which definitely belongs on a soundtrack somewhere if there is any justice - film producers take note! Nick manages to weave the sounds of a variety of instruments into a delightfully whistful whole. The Devil And The Deep Blue Sea is another track which deserves to be in a film. Certainly there is a mixture of drama tinged with romance to this one and I am sure that someone will eventually set lyrics to it at some point, turning it into a delightful song. As Nick himself said during our interview, Cantus is the album's first Disco Diva track, with a space aged introduction and infectious rhythm track which to my ears can best be described as "The Pet Shop Boys meet Enya" and this would be a HUGE hit on the dance floors if released as a single. Conquistador harks back to a more melodic time and is "High Noon meets The Magnificent Seven" - an austere track full of the pride and passion of Old Spain. Dixon Hill is the Swing band track, which for some unknown reason reminds me of the theme tune to the Eighties detective series Shoestring. This is in turn complimented by the delightfully romantic Veil Of Sighs whose main theme echoes the classic Are You Going To Scarborough Fair tune without being in the least derivative. The flute is simply gorgeous, and the accompanying guitar and keyboards are delightfully understated - a classic!
Nick's "four on the floor" version of Van Der Graaf's classic Theme One is still as infectious as the original was all those years ago, and this is almost Oldfield-esque in places, and a suitable companion for Cantus. The album's title track and magnum opus (or should that be Magnus opus?) rounds off the album, beginning with Anatomy Of The Mind which is a delightfully atmospheric piece that weaves a spell of magic over the listener, and which echoes in the vaults of the mind long after it is over. Stripping Of The Flesh is an infinitely more strident piece accompanied by another infectious bass rhythm and an eerie vocalisation which in turn leads into the final piece of this suite; Weighing Of The Souls which continues the theme with a truly awesome keyboard fanfare echoing back to the halcyon days of "progressive" rock at its finest, and the haunting vocal mantra combines with some superb playing to draw the album to a highly satisfying close.
The epic sixteen-minute title cut: 'Inhaling Green' is a work of utter genius - a complete progressive/electronic crossover that is a perfect closing sequence to bring such an album to a magnificent climax. This piece can only be described as a “sci-fi movie for the ears” that comes in 3 episodes, the first of which opens in mystical fashion with the beautifully ethereal: 'Anatomy Of The Mind', where a haunting electronic generated boys choir performs a 'wordless' vocal theme, sounding like something written for a film like: 'Titanic' or 'Edward Scissors Hands'.
It's eerie, yet beautiful, with choral textures and sweeping synth strings swelling up through the evocative main theme and stirring your emotions to breaking point.
This cross-fades peacefully into the sensational 2nd part: 'Stripping Of The Flesh', which offers a different angle to a familiar theme – ENIGMA style rhythms drive the passage on as female voice and synth melodies form the backdrop for a piece set in the future, with two robotic electronic voices performing a narrative as the music takes you through the mind expanding landscape. A thrilling, soaring electric guitar solo comes in towards the end of this passage as do several creative electronic effects, all making for a wonderfully majestic atmospheric environment.
That incredible track (and the main album) ends as the piece moves into: 'Weighing Of The Souls', the 3rd and final movement on the title track, starting out in weird and wonderful space territory with sound samples and odd effects that are strange but extremely effective. Then, in comes the ghost of GENESIS past - Steve Hackett in the guise of Geoff Whitehorn, with his guitar on fire, searing and driving headlong through huge wedges of keyboard chords, creating several dramatic climaxes along the way, with massed synths and powered-up percussion flying high in the mix. Here, the track sounds like some long lost GENESIS epic, a bit like: ‘Firth Of Fifth’ as it builds towards it's finale, then cross fades back to reprise the opening sequence, where the sound of the robotic voices blends with Mellotrons and gorgeous heavenly chorals to end this magnificent "movie for the ears" in dream-like fashion - Sixteen minutes of classic, dynamic, musical fantasy splendour!  The first of the 2 Bonus Tracks on ‘Inhaling Green [2020]’ is a re-work of: ‘Night Of The Condor’, a firm favourite from Nick’s very first album: ‘Straight On ‘Till Morning’. It’s has an airy, thoroughly beautiful theme driven by a haunting piano melody, merged with multi-layered seas of synth-strings and choral effects and in the second half a soaring electric guitar solo rolls in. With the added driving power of Nick’s own rhythm section behind it, he has given the piece fantastic new 2020 production values to replace the original 1999 effort - with better sounds chosen for the melody, and enhanced by the application of new techniques learned over the last two decades. The track just flows perfectly over into the feel of ‘Inhaling Green’, snugly fitting into the overall style of the main album with the utmost of ease. VANGELIS would be proud of this one!  The 2nd of the Bonus Tracks is the Previously Unreleased: ‘Lord Percy's Folly’, a recently recorded four-minute sister piece to the track: 'Convivium' on Nick's 2020 album: ‘Catharsis’. Medieval in character, it is a weird but wonderful hybrid of medieval madrigal and Baroque produced on synthesizers and fitting the 'theme instrumentals' vibe of the original album. So, there is it, a wonderful new sound and look to one of my all-time favourite albums … this is as good as it gets :-)

15,90 EUR
incl. 19% tax excl. Shipping costs
Various Artists - Music for the 3rd Millennium Vol.2

Artist: Bernard Xolotl, Michael Stearns, Nick Rhodes,...
P: 2001
LTD 1000
Unreleased Tracks celebrating the masters of electronic, ambient and progressive music.

15,40 EUR
incl. 19% tax excl. Shipping costs
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