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Band: Ken Baird

CD Title: “Further Out”

Band Website: www.kenbairdmusic.com

Label: Perpetual Tree Music - Independent Release

Release Date: 2009

 

I find the music of Ken Baird very pleasing to the ear. And it was a pleasure to receive his latest musical efforts entitled Further Out. I’m a little a little late in reviewing this but I’m sure glad to be listening to it. For those of you familiar with Baird’s music, this is a logical progression and features a nice full sound based around Ken Baird (vocals, keyboards, guitars), Sue Fraser (backing vocals), Chris Lamont (drums), Dino Verginella (bass), Steve Cochrane (guitars) and Andrew Aldridge (guitars). I first heard Baird’s Orion album way back when and it’s been a favorite of mine. Here on Further Out as I say the sound is much fuller but it continues to be warm and fuzzy and at times where we hear recorders or keyboard flute sounds it even gives off a kind of “renaissance fair” feel.

 

There are a total of 9 tracks on Further Out with most tunes in the three or four-minute range. Most of these tunes are fairly upbeat mid-tempo with a hint of plaintiveness. It’s on the longer compositions where Baird’s more proggy side shines through, such as the opening “Spinning Wheels” [5:57] and the closing Further Out” [10:01] but even in between are some fascinating tunes that feature some interesting arrangements such as “The Sound of Rain” [3:43] and “Everything to Lose” [5:38]. A few of the compositions reflect a bit of a harder edge, most prominent in the guitar sound but for the most part there is a very balanced tone sort of like what Barclay James Harvest or Alan Parsons used to accomplish. Most of these tunes feature lush keyboard orchestrations at times creating huge swells of music buttressed with layers of soaring vocal harmonies.     

 

This is a great set of tunes. Fans of Baird’s music will know what I’m talking about, they’ve probably already got the disc, but if you enjoy melodic progressive rock with lots of symphonic orchestrations I think you’ll really enjoy the music of Ken Baird. Fans of the aforementioned Alan Parsons and BJH will also find much to appreciate here. I think that Further Out has now become my favorite Ken Baird album. 

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