Steve Cataldo - guitar, vocal
David Christiansen - guitar
Richard Bartlett - guitar
Joseph Santangelo - organ, piano
Thomas Belliveau - bass
David Weber - drums
For many first-time listeners of The Front Page Review their one and only album, "Mystic Soldiers" will seem like just another footnote in the endless ranks of bands to have come out in the late sixties. Based out of Boston, many of their songs are keyboard dominated, and Steve Cataldo's vocals will leave you with a feeling of having heard any one of their particular songs on any one of the countless oldies stations dominating the airwaves of your favorite city. You should listen a little closer, however, because there are some fine aural antics going on in the background of many of these songs. The opening number, "Prophecies/Morning Blue" is almost downright progressive with its theme of nuclear war, a building fuzz guitar, and a breathtaking tempo shift halfway through and then a Doors-like organ fueled coda. "Prism Fawn" sounds much like the Who's "Relax" from the Sell Out album....but once again, the lyrics are fixated on doom.
One of my favorite songs is "Feels Like Love"-it's a wonderful time capsule to the sixties you could have easily found on the first two Nazz albums. The electric, harpsichord-like keyboards play nicely against the tinny rhythm guitar work. "Silver Children" follows, and yields another remarkable shift in tone; we go from happy love to the familiar Doors territory of The End with more of a mystical heaviness. "Valley Of Eyes", with a decidedly more urgent tempo, goes from mystical to apocalyptic protest. "Without You" is more wistful and sad; a nice echo effect is induced onto Cataldo's vocal. The last song to complete the album proper is "For The Best Offer", plays like an extended psychedelic dream with its series of different fade-ins and fade-outs and the persistent image of `she's the girl of a streetcorner tree'. Of the bonus tracks, "What Were You Looking For" features a fine fabulously distorted guitar-workout; "I'm Satisfied" is an upbeat bluesy number (if such a thing can be said to exist), which by being placed unfortunately after Looking For, ends up sounding more pedestrian than it had probably intended to. In all Front Page Review dish up the kind of psychedelic music you would expect from this time period, but they add a marvelous lyrical twist to many of their songs that sometimes is manifested in occasionally twisted music. --- Robert Cossaboon