Passing Decades is the debut progressive jazz/rock album by Rory Ridley-Duff, the composer/keyboard player of the rock group Protos. The album includes tracks that propelled Rory to the top of the 'Hottest Bands' chart at SoundClick: Tempest (#1 Rock Chart), The Maiden (#1 Rock Chart), Space (#1 World Chart), Passing Decades (#1 Instrumental Rock Chart). In all, Passing Decades has nine tracks of symphonic instrumental rock. Normally an album starts well and then gets worse, but I found the reverse to be more true - it starts well, then gets better and better. Variations (track two) has resonances of Tubular Bells. Night Time (track three) evokes the silent streets of London, instrumental music harking back to The Lamb Lies Down on Broadway. Hunting (track four) is a modern version of an old Protos number. The highlights come towards the end with tracks 6, 7 and 9. Tempest is a 14 minute prog rocker's dream: at times like Pink Floyd's Animals (1977), in other moments capturing an instrumental/compositional style not heard since tracks like 'Cinema Show' on Selling England by the Pound (Genesis, 1973). The highlight of the album, however, is the closing track called Space. This 12-minute composition slowly unfolds to produce a truly memorable ending. Rory's early compositions can be found on One Day a New Horizon (Airship, 1982) by Protos. Passing Decades was recorded much later - hence the album title. It reveals the work of a mature musician, with a wide range of experience in arrangement and completely at ease with music composition. A worthy opening statement from an interesting new artist.
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