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Big Sky Import

4.6 out of 5 stars 7 customer reviews

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Audio CD, Import, April 21, 2009
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Editorial Reviews

THE SYN are a band that operate intently in the modern day world. Their focus is on pushing the
envelope of modern progressive rock and moving it in new directions. Their current core lineup of
Steve Nardelli, Francis Dunnery and Tom Brislin may have only been a musical machine since
2008, but this is a band with a long and storied history of constantly exploring new musical
soundscapes. While THE SYN have their eyes firmly focused on the future of progressive rock,
their roots go back to the 1960 s.
In 1965, in the days of the groovy British modster beat scene, 17-year-old Chris Squire (Yes
bassist) and Stephen Nardelli (SYN songwriter/vocalist) met at a local battle of the bands,
competing against each other. That meeting was to be the start of THE SYN. Their freak beat-genre
songs "Grounded" and "14 Hour Technicolor Dream" were the unforgettable trippy love-generation
companions of "Flowerman" and "Created by Clive." By 1966, THE SYN held a permanent
booking at the infamous Marquee Club in London. THE SYN's support slots at the Marquee read
like a "who's who" of the day -- The Who, Pink Floyd, Cream, Jimi Hendrix, etc. Everyone who
was anyone in the British music scene eventually performed at the Marquee Club.
In 2004 Nardelli and Chris Squire brought THE SYN back together and they not only released a 2-
CD edition of the highly acclaimed archival recording, Original Syn, but also put together a new
studio recording entitled, " Syndestructible." Both discs received critical acclaim and a tour for
Syndestructible thrilled fans. The tour was filmed and a live DVD released. But, while Steve
Nardelli is proud of the musical legacy of THE SYN, he has a dedication to looking forward
musically rather than focusing on the glorious past. That dedication is reflected in 2009 with a new
lineup and a new sound based on the considerable SYN legacy, but reaching towards the future.
Big Sky is the newest SYN CD and it showcases both their belief in the concept of the Progressive
Modernist Movement "Mod Prog for Prog Mods," but also their new lineup. The core of the band is
now Nardelli (songwriter, vocalist and guitarist) along with Francis Dunnery (guitar and vocals) and
Tom Brislin (keyboards and vocals). This lineup is augmented live by Brett Kull (guitar) and Paul
Ramsey (drums and percussion).
This is a band who are rightly proud of their roots and history, but not content to live on the strength
of that legacy. Big Sky proves that they are continuing to push the envelope of musical expression
and create new sounds and themes. This is a group with ties to the 1960 s but an artistic vision that
is firmly set in the 21st Century.

Track Listings

Disc: 1

  1. Big Sky
  2. Devils And Demons
  3. New Reality
  4. Universal Witness
  5. Kings, Clowns, Cardinals
  6. Milo
  7. Running Out Of Time
  8. Madonna And Child
  9. The Reason


Product Details

  • Audio CD (April 21, 2009)
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Format: Import
  • Label: Alliance
  • ASIN: B001UDUR90
  • Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (7 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #135,392 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

Amazon's Syn Store

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Audio CD
After thoroughly enjoying Syndestructible, The Syn's 2005 release, I didn't hesitate to purchase a special pre-order package of Big Sky, which included an advance online download. So, I have been able to listen to Big Sky for almost a month now.

Despite our positive predisposition towards this latest offering from the Syn, both my wife and I were shocked by what a powerful and beautiful collection of songs are contained herein. I've come to view Big Sky as a concept album, the songs are so linked thematically: The Everyman or Everywoman, living in our modern world, with all of it's social fragmentation, misunderstanding, pressure and potential for isolation, and our civilization in danger from how we behave with each other and with our environment. However, the overall point of view is positive, as sung in Devils and Demons, "Well, I've got love right here in my heart/and I've got hope that won't fade away/and I've got faith that stands me apart/and I've got dreams to show me the way." But still, "It's a long, long way." And that's one of the many aspects that are so striking about Big Sky, lyrically it's so unflinchingly honest about the human condition, yet it comes strongly across as a warm and upbeat album. I really appreciated a comment I read from Francis Dunnery regarding these songs: "It's an album of the times, and I think what the Germans call zeitgeist ... it means a spirit of the times. There's no English equivalent of that, but that's what the Germans meant. It meant a spirit of the times. And I think this album carries the spirit of the times because we're all looking for some hope, and faith in the goodness of life after being destroyed for so long after the last, you know, so many years."

Musically, it is has a different feel from their previous release.
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Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
I wasn't sure what to expect from The Syn when I ordered this CD. Sales blurb labeled it as "progressive," which it isn't. But it is melodic pop with upbeat positive lyrics that entertain. Steve Nardelli has lead vocals with his songwriting partner Francis Dunnery on backing vocals. "Universal Witness" is a sweet pop track with tight harmonies, "Step into the light; Step out of the pale; If you are not afraid to lose, you will never fail." "Milo" is another special track with a flute-sounding instrument that may be from what Nardelli calls the "Nardellitron," "You're one and the same in the universe." "The Reason" (not Celine Dion doing Carole King) is a lovely track with a pessimistic world view juxtaposed to the upbeat chorus, "Love is the reason we survive; Love is the reason we're alive." "Big Sky" is a satisfying if somewhat less than stunning set worth discovering. Enjoy!
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Format: Audio CD
I recently saw Syn 5/1/2009 At Rosfest.They played and sounded great.I would put this on a must buy list.
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If Steve, Francis and Tom can keep their act together, then The new line up of the SYN has a future. I'd very much like to see a future album from these guys. You can tell the difference in the song writing between Steve and Chris Squire as apposed to Steve and Francis Dunnery....but the music on Big Sky is really good...very refreshing. I recommend this album very much.
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