Since the early 90s, Danish multi-instrumentalist Robin Taylor has notched up in excess of 30 releases under a variety of guises. A versatile guitarist and keyboard player, he’s been associated with looping or jazz-orientated adventures. However, it’s through Taylor’s Universe that he explores prog rock.
It was as a teenager growing up during the the early 70s that he first encountered the prog scene as it was evolving, and it’s therefore no surprise that some aspects of the eight instrumentals here make heavy references to that period. Firestone, for example, crosses the loping meter of King Crimson’s Larks’ Tongues In Aspic (Part II) with the urgent push of The Sahara Of Snow from Bruford’s One Of A Kind.
While the album is largely dominated by carefully scripted keyboards, Taylor does let slip some massed snarling guitar during the powerfully recursive Tortugas.
It’s an enjoyable, if at times familiar-sounding ride, but some unexpected juxtapositions leap out. During the shifting moods of Jakriborg, Hugh Steinmetz’s muted trumpet skips over Mellotron-conjured flutes. Along with the gusty brass charts across the album and some judicious use of Hammond, these occasionally suggest a high-end brass rock hybrid.