In between the rather more unadulterated metal onslaught of Metal Blade there occasionally pops up a band with a singer who can, in the words of Wayne Campbell, "really wail". Jacobs Dream is such a band. In fact, to the uninitiated David Taylor's voice may take some getting used to, but once that process is over you have an awesome band with a damn capable singer in a style that approximates old Queensryche.

Jacobs Dream [sic] have been around for around six years, originally called Iron Angel. In 1998 the name of the prog/power/neoclassical outfit was changed to Jacobs Dream (there being another Iron Angel, I believe) and a demo CD was released. Metal Blade won the bidding war, and this year sees the release of the bands eponymous debut record called, um, "Jacobs Dream" :-)

The first song initially suffers from the listener having to get used to the soaring vocals. With the second track, "Funambulism", the process is just about complete and you can start enjoying the balanced, not exaggeratedly technical songs. "Scape Goat" comes by and you're well impressed. The instrumental corker "Black Watch" makes itself heard and you're just about hooked. "The Gathering" is probably the climax of the album, melodically very pleasing, whereas "The Bleeding Tree" is really quite a beautiful track. These guys have what it takes to make one of those self-indulgently overplayed albums, but they restrain themselves efficiently and deliver quality songwriting in good songs instead.

This band should be going places.

Click here to check out or buy this CD



Written January 2000


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