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Two Sides of Galactic Anthems

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Galactic Anthems is Glenn Adams, a Colorado based independent composer. His electronic music has generated notable interest lately, and this time he's released a pair of CDs that show two sides of his versatile creativity.

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GALACTIC ANTHEMS: Subterranean Transit (CD on Galactic Anthems Music)

This release from 2005 features 67 minutes of dynamic electronic music.

There's a considerable amount of power and authority in this music. Half of that vitality comes from the demonstrative percussion that propels these tracks, but a fair degree is directly attributable to Adams' epic compositions and his robust performance.

The electronics are potent and captivating. Stalwart keyboards pummel the audience with sweeping chords and dynamic expressions. Nimble fingers evoke invigorating melodies from the keys. This stuff is deeply rooted in progressive sensibilities, so the riffs are complex and vibrant. Contemporary electronic stylings are employed too, generating expansive textures and haunting cycles, but the bulk of the tuneage is comprised of commanding keyboard intricacy.

Combining such glorious melodies with charismatic rhythms only enhances this music's magnetic appeal. The percussives are epic and engaging, thrilling to experience and dazzling in their vigorous stamina. Some of the tempos are flavored with tribal mien, but only if those tribes exist in some far-flung future realm that has escaped holocaust and flourishes in utopian manner.

The theme of this release is underground transportation, explaining the drive of these vivid tunes. If a darkness is discernible among the compositions, it can be attributed to this subterranean sentiment, not any ominous intention.

The CD finishes up with a 19 minute composition, "Europa Mission", that displays a more sedate side of Adams' output. Here, icy tonalities tremble across a velvet sky, generating a desolate soundscape that is full of scientific promise. The ambient track possesses a noticeable intensity of the awestruck variety, conjuring frozen fields and swirling oceanic depths.

A winner by any standards.

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GALACTIC ANTHEMS:Before the Drone (CD on Galactic Anthems Music)

This CD from 2005 offers 55 minutes of explosive progrock.

The pieces on this release were recorded from 1987 to 1994 and represent the kind of music that infused his compositional capacities with such overwhelming verve. Joining him on two tracks is Dan Ciarfalia on pyrotechnic guitar.

Here, Adams exhibits a different side of his creativity with instrumental progrock tunes that rock with strapping power. Stunning keyboards deliver robust melodies capable of bringing down the house with their remarkable zest. Marching riffs belt out with astounding scale, dwarfing the earth itself with their monumental proportion. Majestic pinnacles resound with monstrous puissance, transforming every instant into a sonic epiphany.

The use of textural electronics is pretty minimal here, with the majority of the music existing in a far more dynamic territory. Complex riffs surge and frolic, evoking a festivity of grand scope. From the mystical portents of "Dragon's Lair" to the plunging voyage of "Orbital Burn" (which is reprised in "March of the Organic Robots"), Adams applies his compositional mastery with surprising ease as he conjures distinct moods of fantastic demeanor.

Adams' epic percussion escalates everything to even greater heights. The rhythms pound and blast with relentless verve, injecting spunky animation to an already frenetic medium. Dramatic tension abounds.

The guitar sears like a blazing sun, imbuing the tracks with ceiling-scraping ecstasy. There's even a touch of surf guitar hiding in the mix.

Fans of outstanding progrock will not be disappointed.

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Reviews of more Galactic Anthems releases can be found here and here.

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