Francisco Hernandez Whispers from the Wind (1998, AJR Discos)
Whispers from the Wind revels in the classic prog rock style of Francisco Hernandez, a prog rock veteran from his work with the longstanding Mexican band CAST.
Whispers from the Wind is guitar and keyboard driven prog rock with traditional sounding synth textures, layered vocals, flute, and passages of alternating dynamics. The songwriting shows classic prog influences in extended songs containing multiple sections, grand song climaxes, and lightly spiritual lyrics. Hernandez executes this classic style well, but does not add much original content.
On guitar, Hernandez covers all bases will skill, from clean atmospheric passages to grinding crunch, but his flat vocal style may be an acquired taste. The backing musicians perform well overall, except in particular a transition in "The GreatOne's Dreams" where the double bass drumming stumbles while entering a fast guitar tapping passage. The production lags in a few places with dated drum sounds, but these minor sonic flaws can't hold back Hernandez's classic prog spirit.
Fans of CAST or of prog rock in the 70s mold should check out Francisco Hernandez's Whispers from the Wind.
Reviewed by Scott Andrews [sha3u@Virginia.edu]
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