Atmosphera - Lady Of Shalott (1977)

When I discovered Atmosphera, I was happy with the opportunity to hear a progressive rock band from a different country (Israel). But after reading the comments made by the other prog fans I saw that Atmosphera is considered another Yes clone. This is not a bad thing, because every band that sounds like 70's Yes is good, but it is a lost opportunity of hearing to new kind of music because it doesn't incorporate different cultural influences. By the way, a good symphonic prog band inspired in Yes music is alone an opportunity to listen to good prog and that's why I got their music. Well, just listening to the music to know if the band is just another Yes clone or not, so lets go to the music.

The first song, the eponymous song, is a good symphonic rock song, with superb keyboard work (piano, synthesizer) influenced by Wakeman, though the keyboard lines are more like in Relayer. The drum work is very good, the bass reminds me Squire and the vocals are very good, but sound like Anderson. So this is pure Yes. But the music is pretty good, with long instrumental interludes that are very creative and skillfully played. Mainly the keyboard work is superb and there is no excess in this 16-minute song. The guitar has some Howe influences and the guitarist make some very fast solos that are not much Yes.

The next song is another 16-minute song, Cuckoo (Love's Labour Lost), that starts with a great intro, with superb guitar, bass, keyboards and drums. The sung parts are not much far from the Yes style, but the instrumental parts sound different from what Yes have done. The guitar solos are stunning and the drumming is superb. The keyboard solos are very good also, including nice piano and synthesizer. This song has many more variations than its predecessor and it is better in my opinion.

Tomorrow is another superb symphonic prog song with great instrumental introduction. The song is almost instrumental with very different parts and the progressive sound is different from the other songs, with superb guitar and keyboard melodies and solos. It is the best song of the album and it is totally fresh, without strong hooks to the sound of other bands, showing their creative potential at that time..

The last original song is Love is Waiting for a Lover, which has a different lead singer and the song is a bit different in sound than its predecessors, not being very close to Yes sound too, but for some few parts. There is an interesting synthesizer-lead instrumental interlude in the song. It remembers a little late Led Zeppelin because of the guitar and vocals.

The rest is alternative versions and but for Catharsis, that is a kind of RIO experiment of the band and pretty interesting, the other songs doesn't have much impact in the overall album.

So it is not much an Yes clone, though the sound is somewhat very Yes inspired and the music is very good, without fillers. They have excellent musicianship and good writing skills. Unfortunately they didn't have support and the band disbanded before they could do more things. Essential Symphonic Prog. - Review by akin (Fernando Raffani)

Track Listings

DISC 1 (68:20)
1. Lady of Shalott (16:24)
2. Cuckoo (Love's Labour's Lost) (16:47)
3. Tomorrow (10:47)
4. Love Is waiting for a Lover (7:58)
5. Cuckoo - Alternate Version (16:25)

DISC 2 (73:42)
1. VCD (video-cd) Track (20:47)
a) Lady of Shalott (Videoclip) (1977)
b) Me El-ma
c) MIO Catalog
2. Announcement (Shaul Grossberg, Bet Lessin) (0:36)
3. Tomorrow - Live at Beit Lessin (11:00)
4. Lady of Shalott - Live at Galei-Tzahal (12:41)
5. Catharsis (Istopy) (7:46)
6. Nightmare (Me El-Ma) (6:31)
7. Toridtagitar (Me El-Ma) (5:22)
8. The Children Dance (Me El-Ma) (8:59)

Total Time: 142:02

- Efrayim Barak / vocals
- Moti Fonseka /guitar
- Alon Nadel / bass
- Yuval Rivlin / keyboards
- Ami Lipner (later re-named himself to Mi El-Ma) / drums
Releases information

1977 Nana Disc / 2002 MIO Records

Download Disc 1
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