ARTIST:

SEVEN STEPS TO THE GREEN DOOR

(GERMANY)
TITLE:

THE?LIE

(2019)
LABEL:

PROGRESSIVE PROMOTION

GENRE:

PROGRESSIVE ROCK

TAGS:
Concept-album, Opera-Rock
"Seven Steps to the Green Door has gotten a little lost in an ambitious concept: music takes second place, and that's a shame..."
ABADDON (03.05.2019)  
3/5
(0) opinions from our readers (0) comment(s)

Eight years after the remarkable "The?Book", the German band Seven Steps to the Green Door (SSTTGD) presents the second part of its trilogy on religions. The first dealt with the relationship between love and belief, "The?Lie", in a very related artwork, which focuses more on the intrusion of fanaticism into religions: how to deal with the divergent and symbiotic relationship between the moral authority of a religion and the political realities that govern and develop all forms of religion?

This ambitious concept takes up the codes of "The?Book" from the beginning, modelled on that of the "Prologue", and reproduces some of the gimmicks already present in the first volume, notably the motif of "Come to Your Father" which is that of "The Green Door" and serves as the main theme for the whole piece. There is therefore a real musical and conceptual ambition in this album, which also bears all the markers of SSTTGD: a concern not to sink into the easy, especially through the use of "uncomfortable" rhythms that make it difficult, for example, to tap your foot when listening to a piece, the listener being caught out of time after three bars... and yet this instability never takes place at the expense of melodies. The band never fails to slip relevant keys, such as the beautiful piano-sax motif in 'The Word Made Flesh' where Marek Arnold finds John Heliwell's accents in 'Even in the Quietest Moments' (Supertramp), or the intertwined vocal harmonies in 'Hear my Voice Tonight'.

The music is based on hypnotic motifs ('A Dream That Strayed I','The Wolrld Made Flesh','Hear my Voice Tonight') that bring an atmospheric colour, and even tries the violin solo (thanks Steve Unruh on 'A Price to Pay II'!). SSTTGD can also send heavier ones, even joining Dream Theater on some supported riffs ('A Price to Pay I', or the beginning of'Come to Your Father'). The band also benefits from two endearing singers: Lars Köhler has a nice grain of voice ('Hear my Voice Tonight'), and Jana Pöche delivers a very sensitive vibrato ('The World Made Flesh').

Nevertheless, "The?Lie", despite its eclecticism, is not a perfect album: it seems that the Germans have favoured storytelling over music, which gives a much less convincing, less catchy result than "The?Book". By trying to make the music meaningful, to intersect the narrative with cumbersome recitatives (first and last track), the result is both less coherent and less musically exciting than the first volume of the trilogy.

Let's hope that for the last act, the Germans will return to a simpler concept and put composition back in the foreground. "The?Lie" remains an album full of qualities, but which are scattered in a concept that is perhaps too ambitious.


More informations on https://www.facebook.com/ssttgd/?fref=ts





TRACK LISTING:
01. A ? - I - 02:57
02. Salvation - 03:19
03. A Price To Pray - I - 02:51
04. A Dream That Strayed - I - 04:35
05. A Price To Pay - Ii - 05:11
06. A Dream That Strayed - Ii - 03:00
07. A ? - Ii - 02:54
08. Heaven - 01:31
09. The Word Made Flesh - 07:06
10. Hear My Voice Tonight - 09:57
11. Come To Your Father - 10:08

LINEUP:
Anne Trautmann: Chant
Jana Pöche: Chant
Lars Köhler: Chant
Marek Arnold: Claviers / Saxophones, Clarinette
Martin Schnella: Guitares / Basse
Stephan Pankow: Guitares
Ulf Reinhardt: Batterie
Amelie Hofmann: Chant / Invité
Andreas Gemeinhardt: Guitares / Basse / Invité
Annemarie Schmid: Chant / Invité
Denis Strassburg: Basse / Invité
Gerd Albers: Guitares / Invité
Jason Melidonie: Guitares / Invité
Luke Machin: Guitares / Invité
Michael Schetter: Basse / Invité
Peter Jones: Chant / Invité
Sören Flechsig: Chant / Invité
Steve Unruh: Invité / Violon
Susan Kammler: Invité / Hautbois
   
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