Leon : Galasphere 347 is an Anglo-Scandinavian band that is heavily influenced by the series ‘Space Patrol’ from 1963, in which the spaceship carried the same name as the band. Under the leadership of Stephen James Bennett, who also takes care of the vocals, flute, and keyboard, the group went into the studios this year to record their debut album. They asked Andy Jackson, who’s worked with Pink Floyd, to master the album, this sound is easily recognizable on the album. That said, the quality of a band is decided by the songs, not by the sound.
The album only knows three(!) songs, all surpassing the ten minute mark, together they just last over forty minutes. The music is quite atmospheric and makes me think of symphonic and/or progressive rock from the sixties and seventies, which is mainly caused by the flutes and the keyboard sounds. This isn’t very distracting, at times it’s actually quite nice. I do, however, miss some structure in the songs, for instance halfway during the first song ‘The Voice Of Beauty Drowned’ I was thinking that the second song had already started since the music stops for a full three or four seconds before continuing. It doesn’t continue very logically either, we get a very long (too long) keyboard solo that sounds like it was improvised on the spot. When the solo is finally finished it goes back to the theme of the first part of the song. The songs aren’t consistently strong throughout the album either, there are clear better and lesser parts present. I also don’t love the vocals of Bennet, during ‘The Voice Of Beauty Drowned’ his voice is okay but during the first part of ‘The Fallen Angel’ it’s clearly less good. This is both due to the sound of his voice as his capabilities as a singer, some of the parts are on the edge of being out of tine. Funny enough the chorus in that song is quite interesting. Lastly I would like to share one more piece of criticism, during ‘The Fallen Angel’ there is a part where Bennet sings ‘Down Down’ which sounds exactly like a similar part in ‘Don’t You Forget About Me’ from the Simple Minds. I noticed this directly and, besides the fact that it surprised me, it just doesn’t sound good here.
A shame. Such a shame. Even though there are some very interesting moments on the album, it’s just not strong enough throughout the album. Besides that, I don’t think the band sound very original either, even though they are definitely not copying anyone’s sound. No, Galasphere 347 has some strides to make if they want to get a name in the genre. The album will go into my archive and I doubt that it will come out of it again. Perhaps if the next album comes out and contains more structure and better vocals, perhaps then I will be more convinced of their future then I am now.