Lost World Band - Awakening Of The Elements,
Back in 1990, three friends at music college formed a band, calling themselves Lost World. It took until 2003 for the debut album to be released, ‘Trajectories’, and after ‘Awakening of the Elements’ in 2006 the guys made a slight change to the name, and added ‘Band’. Although there had been some slight changes over the years, the original three, Vassili Soloviev (flute), Andy Didorenko (acoustic and electric guitars, bass, acoustic and electric violins) and Alexander Akimov (keyboards, percussion, programming, sound design) are still there (and indeed all played on the most recent album, 2016’s ‘Of Things and Beings’). But 2011 saw the guys working with a new drummer, Konstantin Shtirlitz, and Andy’s thoughts started to turn back to their second album, and wondered what it would sound like if they re-recorded the drums, added violins and then remixed it.
Well, it came out so well that they released it. I don’t think I ever heard the original Musea CD, but I am so glad that Andy thought that I might like to hear this version! Russia has produced some amazing progressive rock bands, and Lost World Band have been a strong favourite of mine since I was sent the debut all those years ago (and looking among my racks I see I still have it). Influenced by the likes of King Crimson and UK, they can easily switch lead instruments from electric guitar to violin or flute, and given that they met at music college it is of course no surprise at all that they are all masters of their instruments. But, it is the arrangements and interplay that makes this album such a delight to listen to. There is a confidence and maturity that is pervasive, and Konstantin knows exactly what to add to provide emphasis and contrast to the melody. It can’t have been an easy task taking on the role he was asked for, but the result is something that is complete, fresh, and totally enjoyable from beginning to end.
They can be bright and energetic, or laid back and thoughtful, while the opening title cut comes across as a mix of Kansas and Jethro Tull, with some more rocky guitar and a delightful Seventies feel as well as leads from both flute and violin. This is a great album, that flows and moves, so much so that the listener is never really sure where they are going to end up, but it doesn’t matter as the journey is always so interesting. If you’ve never investigated Russian progressive rock then you should, and Lost World Band and this album are a great place to start.