Thursday, 13 February 2014

Finnish review of Corky Laing et al

There was a review of the album in the Finnish Rock Magazine, Soundi 
(1/2014). It's one of the biggest and most respected rock magazines in 

The album reviews (in Finnish) are also available online.

Here's a rough translation of the review:

Corky Laing and the Perfect [sic!] child: Playing God, Original Music 
from Test, The Rock Opera

Is the much maligned rock opera making a comeback? Epic has been the  way go for some time already. If rock opera is indeed coming back,  then Corky Laing of one of the best bands ever, Mountain, and its successor, West, Bruce & Laing, is anticipating a trend.

The drummer, who also sings on Playing God has, together with a group of international musicians - many of whom are Finnish, put together a rock opera on a heavy topic that unfortunately is not merely utopian  in modern world, namely genetically modifying our offspring. Two  Finnish philosopher, Matti Häyry and Tuija Takala, who have written on the topic have been helping Laing in this. They both feature on the album also. In addition to the Finnish musicians - Maya Paakkari's intense vocals stand out - there are Denny Colt (vocals and guitar) and Bonnie Parker (vocals and bass) of the American band TANG. They  also play with Laing's Memory Thieves.

For a long time, the people in a fictional town of Happyville have used genetic engineering, but have kept quiet about its downsides.  Playing God approaches the matter in an unconcealed 70s -style,  producing a sound that combines prog rock, hard rock and folk - and  occasionally borders on punk and metal. Overall, this though-through project is actually pretty good. Journey hits you like Dead Kennedy's  at their best and the larger than life riff of Father's Lament won't  leave anyone cold.

It requires concentration to fully appreciate this monumental piece of  work, but that is not to be seen as a flaw. They are not going for  cheap entertainment. I'd be curious to see this performed live.

Playing God
CD - £9.99

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