Elias "ProgFather" Metallinos
Listening to the intro of PBII’s last album, “Eric’s story/Part 1”, one is for certain: That you will absorb this work until its last sip!
It takes great effort, dexterity and sensitivity to create such an album, to approach such an issue, the heroic effort of the 9-year old Eric to overcome cancer, to face his fears, his agonies and his “battles” with the disease. Yet, Lorian, the knight of his granpa’s stories, is always a helper in Eric’s mind.
And as every song follows each other, the listener’s ear clings to the lyrics and is drifted away by this wonderful music soundscape.
The mix of diverse music styles and the addition of the operatic vocals of Nathalie Mees, plus the symphonic orchestral parts, motivate you to become an integral part of this story. Following the sounds and lyrics, it feels like you are a co-rambler of this little hero.
In addition to that, it feels like you travel across countries of dragons, wizards and knights. And all this, only with the music itself. The band contributes amazingly here on that. The sound reminds me of YES and many other progressive rock bands of the 70’s. Specifically, in “Evil wees” we meet the extraordinaire STEVE HACKETT of GENESIS fame in an amazing solo work.
This album is a conceptual one. It’s all about a story. And, rarely, almost never, a concept album is a bad album. And this is something that presupposes very good organization skills, adequate knowledge of the highlighted issue and great experience, to say the least, for an experiential execution with a detailed way. PBII members definitely carry this “packet”. And as the intro of “1000 wishes” narrates, this is an album about struggle, courage and friendship that functions as a sensational, sentimental and fairytale machine.
PBII, although in their second work here, have already created a wonderful modern rock opera!
Two of the purposes of “1000 wishes” were the assemblage of money and the sensitization of people about “Kika” (abbreviated term of “Kinderen Kankervij” that is referred to fighting child cancer).
I think that this is one of the best prog albums of 2013 and every time I have a listen to it I discover some minor new music pathways and territories full of flawless imagination.
Most importantly, I am so happy that there are bands like PBII out there; this means that the hope for good music is still up there. And we, the listeners, are always here to discover brilliant music diamonds like “1000 wishes” that keeps progressive music alive on the altar of quality.