Mogador - Chaptersend album review
Busy-ness as usual from the Italian group Mogador, with Jon Davison guesting
Album four from Italy’s Mogador shows the band continuing to expand their musical ambitions, although at times their reach exceeds their grasp. The group was founded by drummer Richard Allen and his stamp is very prominent, with his drums excessively high in the mix on several songs – he’s positively distracting on Summer Sun. The rockier numbers have a tendency towards arrangements where everyone pulls in different directions, most noticeably keys player Samuele Dotti, and it’s the gentler songs, like the acoustic Tell Me Smiling Child and the jazzy lounge vibe of Breaking Day, that stand out. Yes’ Jon Davison makes a guest appearance on Josephine’s Regrets, while the rest of the singing is split between Allen and Marco Terzaghi. Neither has a particularly rich voice – The Salamander really suffers on that front – and there’s an unfortunate tendency to wander off-key. The powerful instrumental Floating In The Void highlights the interplay between the players, with Luca Briccola doubling up on flute and guitar, before the album concludes with the two-part Mammon’s Greed, which nods towards Yes, Gentle Giant and Big Big Train. A lot of good ideas, but they don’t always coalesce.