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Stencil Forest: Press

Those American pomp rockers, Stencil Forest return with a brand new album. "The Abyss" follows hot on the heels of 2004's reissue of their debut, "Opening Act". If you remember my review of that album, way back in issue 69, then you'll know that I compared them to early Styx, Starcastle, Avalon and Alpha Centauri. Well nothings changed in that department, in fact, nothing has changed full stop! The arrangements are still overblown, if a little bit more laid-back, this time, the musicianship is still of a high quality and in vocalist, Doug Andresen they still have one of the best vocalists to grace this genre, in many a year.

The Abyss

Hopefully the prog community won't have to wait another 20+ years for the follow-up to this one. The Abyss is a strong release filled with sharp instrumentation, catchy melodies, and wonderful vocals, and sure to be a favorite for many before the year is up.
How can guys who have been apart for so long just get back together and pick up where they left off twenty-five years ago? I don't have a clue, but if I was pushed to answer, I'd say that these are wandering friends who went their own separate way, but who, eventually, heard that inner voice telling them that they had "unfinished business" to attend to....and they certainly have heeded that voice.
I have one hope...and it is that Stencil Forest have many more albums to release before that "unfinished business" is well and truly finished.

You really should give this album a try!
Ken Whowell - Travellers Newsletter (Mar, 2006)
This really is a superb album and I can only hope that the band don’t wait so long until the third as this is music that deserves and demands to be heard.
Kev Rowland - Feedback Fanzine - England-UK

Opening Act

Despite being over 20 years old now, this is an album that shows no real signs of having suffered for it's age. From start to finish the mood of the work is very upbeat, and the music, which is both well written and played, seems to have sufficient variety to give it lasting appeal.

'Opening Act' has certainly proved itself to be a welcome addition to my CD collection and whether you are a fan of melodic rock or progressive music I would strongly urge that you give this a listen.

Simon 30th January 2005
Simon - New Horizons (Jan, 2005)
"A wonderful addition to the CD ranks, and a compulsory addition to those who have love affairs with bands such as Alpha Centauri, MPG, Starcastle, Styx, Morningstar etc. Well done to all those involved, and hopefully now it will put paid to all those overpriced rare slabs of Stencil Forest vinyl out there on Ebay. Even better news is that the band have officially reformed, and will release a new album entitled 'The Abyss' early in 2005. Woah!"
"For vintage gear heads, it's the Willy Wonka chocolate factory with Mellotron, Hammond B-3, Mini-Moog and Hohner D-6 Clavinet. Stencil Forest are a six member group so a lot of ideas and synergy can be heard. I can really appreciate the time and place aspect of this kind of music. And this is one of the finest examples I've heard, especially for the genre's late date."
"Stencil Forest is recommended for fans of Dave Mason, early Toto, early Ambrosia, and IQ."