'First In A Field Of One'
(White Knight Records)
Alan Reed first came to the attention of the rock industry as the lead singer and front man of Pallas, who were considered amongst the finest of the emerging progressive rock movement in the last part of the 1980s. Pallas, with Alan at the helm, were considered peers of Marillion, Pendragon and Twelfth Night.
This was a time when the rock music scene was beginning to evolve into defined genres within genres, with thrash already established, death Metal, grunge, prog etc becoming defined and acknowledged. As a result, some of the more melodic but still prog orientated bands became a little less cool and dropped out of sight for a while.
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Having been active in keeping Pallas alive and delivering the music, Alan left Pallas in January 2010 and has now struck out on his own. Alan is now signed with White Knight Records and with this; his first solo album is newly available, there is no doubt that he is still creating music that is similar to the musical sound of the late 1980s that he has long been associated with.
There is every reason for the rock music affecionado to be very thankful for this as there is nothing quite like a good shot of nostalgia. This album is easy to listen to (but not easy listening - no, no, definetely not!!) it is melodic, guitar centric with additional keyboards with defined bass and drums. In short this is a complete music package; balanced, well arranged and like finding a good bottle of wine it's a bit moreish...
Alan's vocals do very much invoke memories of Fish in his early Marillion days but are more melodic and more versatile, less overt power behind them but able to deliver higher reaching vocals with skill. The whole album is an acknowldged display of craftsmanship taking the listener back to a magical sound in music time and space of the late 1980s and there is everything right with that as it is done so beautifully.
Outstanding favourite tracks are 'Kingdom Of The Blind' which is a bit 'Copperhead Road'–ish and 'Bottom Of The Bottle' which is akin to 'Childhood's End'.
'First In A Field Of One' is a bit Stevie Ray Vaughan meets Marillion meets Mike Oldfield who occasionally meet up with Clannad. It is really special so go on – give it a listen.....
1. Begin Again
2. Kingdom Of The Blind
3. Never Too Late
4. Bottom Of The Bottle
5. Darkness Has Spoken
6. The Real Me
7. Tear Drops In The Rain
8. The Usual Suspects