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However - Sudden Dusk


One of the great unsung and criminally-ignored American progressive bands. Taking their rightful mantle alongside fellow cult combos Happy the Man and Cartoon, this inventive quartet blended off-kilter arrangements, unusual instrumentation and a Zappa-esque humorous flair into a devilishly clever mixture. However blended breakneck rock, pastoral classicality, jazz and symphonic progressive in consistently solid fashion. If there’s been a glaring gap in your progressive rock collection, it’s probably because you’ve been unable to snare a copy of this delightful, maverick masterwork - there’s no excuse now, is there? [i/e]

However use their musical abilities to build upon the Gentle Giant and Canterbury foundation to create a music that can only be described as one of the better American efforts from the late 70s into the 80s. If you like your Prog steeped in counterpoint and technical ability, However will be worth your while to audition. [Gibraltar (Mike Taylor)]

I am intensely satisfied with this excellent album. It fills my craving for intelligent prog... There are tight fast breaks, complex and rapidly changing time signatures, the fierce use of band dynamics not just for dramatic effect but as an element of composition itself. This is highly structured music, yet at no point is a piece at the mercy of structure; it is always the other way round... As you are able to increasingly assimilate the music in all its density, it gradually expands like a dried sponge to fill the available space in your head. [Gibraltar (Kenneth Newman)]

Often quoted as the American answer to Hatfield and the North, However were actually much more than that... hints of Gentle Giant, The Muffins, Happy the Man... this is certainly a superb CD. [Audion]

From go to finish, this is a pleasure. A rousing chorus of cheers in 5/4 time for However. [Sweet Potato]

         

The reissue of However’s classic Canterbury-inspired first album is one this writer has been anticipating for years... They have taken that [Henry Cow] type of sound and expanded it to a higher melodic level, full of atmospherics and powerful dynamic flux, so in that respect, one may also be reminded of Happy the Man... This is an album that many would enjoy. There’s enough going on here to keep even the most discriminating listener interested, yet it remains fairly accessible overall. [Exposé]

Sudden Dusk has the feel if not the actual sound of the English Canterbury school married with a detectable American folk influence, producing rock/chamber compositions of unusual beauty and dimension... The usual reference points given include Zappa, National Health, Gentle Giant and the like, but the similarities to those groups are only in that these are first rate players and the fact that the music is often complex, though never at the expense of symmetry and melody... Sudden Dusk is one of those records that represent the apex of American progressive music. [Gibraltar (Ken Watson)]

The playing is inspired and truly exceptional, not your average lyrical prog. [Music Uncovered]

If you appreciate progressive quirkiness and skilled playing in the grand traditions of Zappa and Gentle Giant, you’re sure to enjoy this album.” [Progression]

This is an eclectic mix with great musicianship, dynamics, and composition skills, [ranging from] atmospheric to heavy. This music surprises you with every listen. I highly recommend this band to anyone who likes a challenge musically; they will blow you away. I would say there is a Happy the Man sound, along with some Crimson, and they are also very original... This is a great disc and has everything, from heavy to new age, great songs; it will take some time but this could be top 10 for me. [Prog-Net (Eric Porter)]
 

However - Calling


It is all some of the finest progressive rock I’ve heard in a long time. The counterpoint and instrumental/vocal arrangements are truly sublime! [Gibraltar]

After all these years, I still absolutely go crazy while listening to this magnificent album. Done when music was starting to hit an all-time low, However created Calling, a diverse combination of strong prog/fusion/classical sections and beautiful piano/vocal combinations. The singing is so authentic and refreshing, as the mixture of male and female parts are balanced perfectly. These guys are established, knowledgeable musos with top notch chops, but underlying all of it is the fabulous, unique blending of styles, professional and personal writing. The remasters of both Sudden Dusk and Calling are so well done, you finally get to hear what positive things can be done with modern technology. I pray there’s another offering from However someday! [Prog Archives]

The sound of However is an amalgamation of the Canterbury sound and other influences more directly connected with Rock in Opposition, thereby creating a European sound rooted in American culture. At the same time, Calling offers tender ballads such as Sigh or moments of contrapuntal complexity in On the Face of the World or of pure R.I.O. in Wild. The sound moves from moments of pop simplicity to the density required by the themes influenced by Henry Cow. A good mixture of styles that will be received with pleasure by rock adventurers. [Margen (Spain)]

Who says art rock is dead? This remastered and expanded reissue of a 1984 album by the Virginia-based ensemble However makes quite a convincing argument for the genre’s vitality. Bassist Prince (who was once Michael Manring's teacher - imagine that) plays with inspiration and invention throughout, often providing the spark that lifts a ponderous polymetric concept off the ground and makes it soar. [Bass Player]

Happily, However’s experimental approach to Canterbury style progressive remains intact, although the overall tone is more subdued than on Sudden Dusk. It boils down to a classy, eminently pleasant listen - superb Sunday afternoon fare. [Progression]

         

A lot of experimentation and complexity comprise Calling. There is a mixture of very varied rhythms and styles, from a softness comparable to Renaissance in On the Face of the World, to a Camel-Canterbury progressive in Into the Dance... This album is an exquisite collection of songs... played with great emotion and professionalism, very intense with almost classical interludes that introduce themes that are very well produced and arranged. It is a beautiful record, very direct for the listener, who has no choice but to concentrate on it, as there are a thousand mysteries to unravel. Recommended to listeners of progressive, of fusion, of medieval, of Canterbury, of Camel, of Henry Cow, and of Hatfield and the North. A great jewel in a small package. [Atropos (Spain)]

Inspired by incipient UK progressive rock icons like Gentle Giant, Henry Cow, and Hatfield and the North... ranges from eclectic prog-rock to full blown jazz-rock fusion... The group sound really excels on the instrumental cuts which also evoke the irrepressible musical spirit of King Crimson. [Time and a Word]

When this was originally issued, many reviewers hailed this Virginia band as the American National Health. Really, that wasn’t so accurate, as However had a range of influences much wider than the Canterbury scene, from Van der Graaf Generator through to Jade Warrior. [Audion]

Loosely comparable to Canterbury bands like Caravan, yet they still retain some of the experimental touches that made Sudden Dusk the classic it was... Many of the bonus tracks are quite good and justifiably included... In all, this is a fine album. [Exposé]

The highest compliment that can be paid a good musician or band is that they sound like no one else and direct comparisons to other’s music prove misleading; this is the case with However. A needed and welcome reissue. [Gibraltar]