Sanhedrin – Ever After

Definitely not to be confused with the UK black metal band of the same name, who also has a new debut album out, this Sanhedrin is an Israeli symphonic prog band. I’ve been bitching a lot recently that “new prog” is all falling into either the angry prog metal genre or else the depressing “alt-rock” or “post-rock” categories. Then along comes Sanhedrin‘s debut, Ever After, and it feels like stepping from Hell (or Dallas in the summer, same thing …) into a beautiful garden with cool breezes blowing the scent of a nearby stream across your senses. How completely refreshing!

Sanhedrin‘s debut reminds me a lot of Camel‘s Snow Goose due to its mostly “clean” guitar work (as opposed to distorted), flute and lack of vocals. That’s no accident … Sanhedrin started life as a Camel cover band. But they quickly moved on from here to start writing their own material, which also sounds influenced by Jethro Tull, Gentle Giant, with some medieval influences (Gryphon?) and italian prog-like organ work (particularly Le Orme). Their CD, several years in the making, was finally released early in 2011 on AltrOck Records‘ new Fading Records imprint.

This is AltrOck‘s second release on the Fading Records imprint, dedicated to symphonic prog rather than the more RIO-styled music on the rest of the AltrOck Records label. The first was Ciccada, another excellent band, but bearing very little resemblance to Sanhedrin. But with these two albums as the first releases on the imprint, I’m very impressed at AltrOck‘s ability to find truly exceptional bands for their label. Their reach is far and wide … I mean, Greece and Israel? Not my first thought when I wonder, “where does great prog originate?” (yes, yes, I know about Vangelis and Trespass, but you have to admit they’re rare). Perhaps it’s time for some fresh new entries, and Sanhedrin surely qualifies.

Ever After is one of the best debut albums I’ve ever heard, and is highly recommended for fans of the above-mentioned bands, or just if you’re tired of the excess adrenaline and ear strain caused by too many chugging, distorted guitars. Have a rest! — Fred Trafton



Click here for Sanhedrin‘s MySpace page
Click here for Sanhedrin‘s Reverb Nation page
Click here for AltrOck Records‘ web site

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One Response to “Sanhedrin – Ever After”

  1. Paul Millington Says:

    Spot on review Fred. This band are so refreshing, particularly as ‘Camel’ have been off the scene for so long. I’m hoping they can get some momentum after this. I avoid ‘metal’ influenced prog like the plague, so great to hear a band with roots in a gentler era. They still manage to sound original despite the clear references. Paul

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