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Frank Carducci: Torn Apart

Dutch instrumentalist’s heartfelt, Hackett-approved second LP.

Immersed in Hammond organs and Genesis records from the off, Carducci has long wrought the prog sword, climaxing in 2010, when he opened for Steve Hackett.

Not that this stopped him also playing in a range of rock, funk and soul outfits, soft hints of which are here on in Torn Apart. All bound up in one heartfelt prog-pop package, with yearning Flower Kings-esque vocals. He opens in gleefully unradio-friendly fashion, with the 10-minute title track – stuffed with classic rock guitar licks, whimsical early 70s pop tones and proggy mood changes. Closer To Irreversible follows this up with lush guitar heroism from Hackett, and amid all the synthy bells, whirs and whistles it becomes increasingly clear that Franck has a mature ear for original, warming songs. A Brief Tale Of Time (a none-too-brief 12 minutes) evolves into a really lovely pop song, offset by distorted rock chords. There’s rock musical theatre in his heartfelt, storytelling style, notably in the emotion-traversing Mr Hyde & Dr Jekyll. That one’s Supertrampy, and he closes the record with their School. Not the most personal sign-off, but a familiar finish to a picturesque journey.

Polly is Features Editor at Classic Rock magazine, where she commissions regular pieces and longer reads (including new band coverage) and writes a few things. She also writes for Louder, Prog and Metal Hammer, and talks about songs on the 20 Minute Club podcast. In her spare time she writes fiction and cooks.