Title - 'Children of the Cosmos' (Cherry Red Records)
Artist - Darryl Way
If you have never heard the name Darryl Way before, allow me to bring you up to date. Born in Taunton, Somerset (where they make the Cider!), Way is a British rock and classical musician who was a founding member of Curved Air. He actually co-wrote their only hit single, 'Back Street Luv' and is best known as a violinist - although he also plays keyboards.
He began his musical training at Dartington College of Arts, and later studied at the Royal College of Music. When he met Francis Monkman, they formed the band Sisyphus, which evolved into Curved Air.
Here in 2014 and Way has just released his first prog rock album in over twenty years, Children of the Cosmos. An album chock full of his usual, well defined creative prog juices, the man known as one of the early founders of the genre is still at the top of his game.
Children of the Cosmos brings us 12 brand new tracks that highlight Way's incredible compositional work. A master at the rock violin and with matching vocal skills second to known, the title track kicks things off in perfect style, but it's tracks such as 'Spooks,' 'Nature's Way,' and both 'Don't Look Back' (featuring Pachelber's Canon) and the stunning 'A Winter's Tale' that solidify this album.
Funnily enough, some of these songs sound like they could have been lovingly created in between his first tenures in Curved Air when he formed a second band, Wolf. They issued three albums prior to disbanding in 1974 and then Way went back for a second period with Curved Air. Tracks like 'The Best of Times' and even 'Lagan Love' just sound so familiar of that time period, to me, and perhaps even some of his early solo work that came after all that.
Indeed, having brought out eight solo albums since Concerto for Electric Violin in 1978 - inclusive of his one-before-last solo album, Ultra Violins (2013) which features accessible classical music delivered in his own unique style - the man heavily involved in a variety of classical music productions over the years has now released one of the best albums of the past decade in Children of the Cosmos.
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