Conspiracy - The Unknown
Inside Out America
Artist: Conspiracy (www.chrissquire.com / www.billysherwood.com)
Title: The Unknown
Label: Inside Out America (www.insideout.com)
Genre: Rock/Progressive, Art, Pop
I find it ironic that the title of this album ended up being The Unknown. Everything about this music has to do with a ‘known' commodity by the name of Chris Squire, bass player extraordinaire for Yes. He is the only Yes member that has remained with the group through its various incarnations, and that is a tribute to his magnitude and constancy over the years as the model band member and musician. His partner in crime is guitarist Billy Sherwood (World Trade, Yes). Together they make one implausible album. Although all the credit goes to the dynamic duo, a wink and a nod must go to drummer Jay Schellen for holding down the backbeat of this band. The bass and drummer is the spine of the musical body, so I think giving credit where it is due is very important.
Squire sounds like that other lead singer in the other band he usually gigs with in some ways, and the music itself is more than just an ‘offshoot' as they call it, of Yes, it is in close proximity to what Yes music has sounded like in the past. For me that was not a disappointment, but a welcome mat for my ears to wrap around. Oh yeah, by the way…I love Yes.
I may sound like a rhyming fool here but there is a story that falls together as the album progresses, so here it goes…The very first song sets the pace as the boys put together their "Conspiracy" to start a "New World." "There Is No End" to their creativity in each of these tracks as Squire is in good voice and his bass powerfully sweeps and thumps its way through each piece as Sherwood's guitar answers the call of the veteran Squires' melodic persistence and clear hook filled vocals. Their tour de force prog-rocker is the title track, it clocks in at 11:21, and it is quite a showstopper. It is a most proper way to wrap up this session for all of the diehard prog-rock enthusiast (and Yes faithful). On this advance copy, I was lucky enough to receive the one with the bonus track; it usually does not work that way so I was happy.
Those of you that have enjoyed the artsy prog-pop rock of Asia, John Wetton, and sometimes Yes (I emphasize the word sometimes), will be very appreciative of this CD, others may look upon this disdainfully as a Yes rip off. I loved this album without exception and could not stop listening to it. Whatever your viewpoint is, you are entitled to it, just remember one thing…these gents are two world-class musicians making some of the best rock music that you will find today. There now, I have told what you will get and now it is up to you to decide whether or not if you want it.
1. Conspiracy - 5:05
2. Confess - 4:37
3. New World - 7:22
4. 1/2 A World Away - 5:48
5. There Is No End - 5:15
6. The Wheel - 5:27
7. Premonitions - 4:10
9. The Unknown -11:21
10. I Could (Bonus Track) - 4:22
Chris Squire-Bass, Vocals
Billy Sherwood-Guitar, Vocals