My River Flows (Doone Records, 2005)
IZZ’s fourth album, My River Flows, shows a mature, skilled and cohesive band. The album begins with ‘My River Flows’ a hard rocking pieces that is probably the least interesting. Paul Bremner, who is an excellent guitarist, needlessly saturates the piece with hard rock riffs.
After hearing another hard rock intro, I was afraid that ‘Late Night Salvation’ was going to go in the same direction as ‘My River Flows.’ Thankfully, ‘Late Night Salvation’ is an excellent piece with a truly spectacular long electric guitar solo by Paul Bremner, an equally excellent drum performance by Greg DiMiceli and a masterful closing synthesizer solo by Tom Galgano.
As in previous albums, IZZ incorporates ear catching pop hooks. This is the case of ‘Rose Colored Lenses’ which begins in very pop mode and ends with another of those fabulous, but too short synth solos by Tom Galgano.
‘Deception’ features a synthesizer melody that would make Kit Watkins proud. And for the first time in the album, Laura Meade’s outstanding vocals get to have a leading role. In the finest symphonic rock tradition, ‘Deception’ ends with a mellotron and guitar grand finale.
In addition to the progressive rock masters, The Beatles is one of the main inspirations of the band. The first part of ‘Crossfire’ could be best described as Beatles with mellotron and Chris Squire-style bass. The lengthy piece later morphs into Yes-influenced sounds.
The Beatles’ aura refuses to go and continues in ‘Anything I Can Dream.’ The song is followed by an acoustic guitar-fueled lullaby titled ‘Abby’s Song.’
The core of the album is the final track, ‘Deafening Silence,’ a 21-minute masterpiece. This well-conceived composition contains the various elements that make progressive rock great: a mesmerizing introduction, captivating instrumental passages and arrangements, dreamy and intense moments, outstanding vocal work, and a climactic conclusion.
The line-up on My River Flows includes Tom Galgano on keyboards, lead vocals; John Galgano on bass, guitar, keyboards, lead and backing vocals; Paul Bremner on lead guitar; Brian Coralian on electronic and acoustic drums and percussion, programming; Greg DiMiceli on acoustic drums and percussion; Anmarie Byrnes on vocals; and Laura Meade on vocals.
Overall, My River Flows is an impressive recording by IZZ, one of the finest progressive rock acts in the United States. IZZ features skilled instrumentalists and three of the best vocalists in the current progressive rock genre.