Taylor's Universe - Oyster's Apprentice (English version)

Kev Rowland

ImageWell, there can be no doubt who Taylor’s 18th album was a tribute for, namely Secret Oyster whose leader Karsten Vogel is again credited. This album sees Robin stating when the songs were originally written and just the first and last are from 2005, while the others go back as far as three numbers from 1976. But strangely enough it is probably one of the most forward sounding albums of his canon. Here Robin is striking a strong balance between jazz and symphonic progressive rock, adding to both styles without diluting from either so that fans of both genres are able to fully take this album on board. It is incredibly open and inviting, melodic and layered while also containing the space and casual structure so often the important aspects of his work.

It is instrumental music that is never boring, always intriguing, yet not as challenging as some. It could never be considered middle of the road but here Robin has produced an album that will get far more attention just because it is so easy to listen to, packed full of enjoyable melodic stories and interludes. It is polished yet still contains the spontaneity of his more experimental albums. Overall if one is looking for a place to start investigating the vast amount of work Robin has produced then this could well be the place to start.


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