Review of Rofloré
Peter Swart - Rofloré
Two hundred years of quests through parallel galaxies (in this case Kavhalan) with airships (in this case the Pontha) are of course a piece of cake for the ordinary progrock lover.
Peter Swart, whose atmospheric music is inspired by the fantasies of Peter van der Laan, with whom he worked for thirty years and with whom his last feat is the band Morphosis, tells us on his own website that he’s mostly influenced by the symphonic pop music of the 70s and that since then actually little has changed. Then you know, being a good reviewer, that you obviously cannot claim that a record may sound a tad dated. A search on Swarts own website gives further the impression that "Rofloré" is his most ambitious project to date. Earlier work was based on paintings, stories and dreams or was suitable for audiovisual projects, but now here we have a real concept album.
Being an ambitious album "Rofloré" sounds remarkably airy, a bit noncommittal. It consists of nine tracks, or 23 if you like, which together produce more than forty minutes of music. This music is a hodgepodge of musical ideas that indeed all are rooted in the 70s. Acoustic guitar pieces meld into spacey keyboards, with now and then a beautiful accent of bass pedals (coming from a box or not ...). The music is to a great extent instrumental. At the beginning I did hold my breath as soon as a narrator appeared, but fortunately he demands no role of "War of the Worlds" -like proportions. What remains is a nice kind of varietéprog that evokes thoughts of, for instance, Eloy, Kayak, Mike Oldfield and Vangelis. Here a working tension, there a more fragmentary piece.
In the (semi-) instrumental prog with sf-like themes, which also borrows from ambient or new age, the supply of sheer rubbish is perhaps greater than in any other area of our favorite genre. With "Rofloré" Swart leaves most of this mess with ease behind, but the impression of a somewhat patchy record remains, on which the theme transitions occasionally are quite abrupt. The subject of the concept is also a bit chewed, mais soit, there is perhaps too much personal aversion in this for a fair judgment. What can I conclude? Of its kind "Rofloré" is very nice.