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The Skys: Colours Of The Desert

Lithuanian prog outfit blends the modern with the retro.

To be great you need to be original, but sometimes you just want to bathe in pure pleasure, and these Lithuanian progsters satisfy that need well. With guests such as prog stalwarts Dave Kilminster and Anne-Marie Helder, The Skys feast on the rich platter of mid-70s Floyd, classic-era Yes and pomp metal.

Thus the curtain raiser and title track begins with keyboard pads that might have graced Shine On You Crazy Diamond before throwing in a spiky breakdown that wouldn’t embarrass messieurs Howe and Squire. These forays into the 70s prog songbook litter almost every track of this vast 50-minute offering and, harnessed to almost frighteningly catchy vocals, they’re irresistible.

On an album of this length there are inevitable weaker moments. Is This The Way? is a rather ponderous pop song that wants to be Floyd circa 1994, and closer What If? is pure major-key fromage. But The Skys manage to fuse their retro fixations with enough modern stylings to impress.

The entrance fee is worth paying simply for the vast Walking Alone – laconic guitars, insistent riffs and swirling organ all made for one thing: aural pleasure. Kick back, turn up and enjoy.