Schrodinger's Cat | Potter's Field

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Potter's Field

by Schrodinger's Cat

Dynamic Rock songs from Pop to Prog. Emotions run strong throughout the album including powerful vocals and tasteful musicianship. Similar to but not just like: Phil Collins/Genesis, Rush, Marillion, Muse
Genre: Pop: Today's Top 40
Release Date: 

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  Song Share Time Download
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1. Freedom
5:54 $0.50
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2. Twelve Strings
2:01 $0.50
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3. Same Old Storm
5:56 $0.50
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4. All I Need
6:31 $0.50
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5. Headline
4:52 $0.50
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6. Butterfly
5:16 $0.50
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7. See Through Me
6:11 $0.50
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8. Potter's Field
5:33 $0.50
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9. Cry
6:07 $0.50
Downloads are available as MP3-320 files.

ABOUT THIS ALBUM


Album Notes
In the Nineties, radio and singles charts have been overwhelmed with teenage pop overnight successes and a flurry of alternative bands - but what has been lacking is emotional, thought provoking/intelligent songwriting. This combined with extremely talented musicianship describes the music of Schrodinger's Cat.

In 1995 S'Cat released their debut album. The CD combines their progressive influences (Rush, Kansas, Marillion) with commercial appeal, resulting in a brilliant mix of meaningful lyrics and tastefully intricate instrumental passages.

Muller's key textures provide a perfect atmosphere which the band builds upon. His piano solo intro to 'Silent Scream' is poignant while his melodic quick fingers blaze for the key-driven track 'Fire'. Balducci's sharp and selective approach to the drumkit provides a wide array of fills and patterns merging the best of Neil Peart (Rush) and Phil Ehert's (Kansas) styles, as well as Ian Mosley's (Marillion) mastery of cymbal-textures. Bassist Mike Armstrong's range on six-string bass brings an added element to the band, complementing Balducci to form a solid rhythm section in addition to his well placed bass runs and fills. Armstrong provides these as the driving force behind the song 'Silent Scream'.

Glasgow, Scotland native, Paul Bremner adds a truly unique guitar sound and immense talent which provides a very visual guitar sound. Creating an atmospherically moody intro to 'Loch Ness Monster', one can envision a calm and foggy morning over the loch. With Muller's help the elusive monster awakens during an intricate instrumental passage wrought with Bremner's emotional guitar work.

Michael Horne, originally from Atlanta, GA, adds a vocal style that is energetic and emotional. From the soothing caress of 'Careless Whisper' to the passionately charged 'Shadow', his delivery of the groups intelligent and very often poignant lyrics help to provide the signature sound which defines Schrodinger's Cat.

After their self-titled release, the band continued to sharpen their skills with shows around the Mid-Hudson and Western New York regions. This included opening for such groups as Marillion, Fish, Kansas, Zebra, Spocks Beard, and the Jerry Garcia Band.

During the summer of 1998 they released their follow-up cd Potter's Field. The nine tracks lyrically explore such topics as domestic violence, adverse effects of the media, lost love, and the strength of the human spirit. Instrumentally it is tight and masterfully crafted with a mix of strong melodies and superb songwriting.

Horne's emotive voice begins the disc a cappella on the track 'Freedom'--"We live in an empty world, look around it shows in our eyes, we live in an angry world, all in all it's no surprise...". Balducci's snare enters as Muller's keys rise in the background to unveil an honest look at freedom in contemporary society and how it should not be taken for granted. Written over a year before the conflict in Kosovo, this brings to mind not only that struggle for justice, but all who are oppressed: "Listen to their hopeless cries, can't you hear them calling for freedom?"

Bremner again shows his versatility through a short instrumental acoustic piece aptly titled 'Twelve Strings' which leads into possibly the quintessential Schrodinger's Cat song, 'Same Old Storm'. Emotional vocals from Horne over a full and rich guitar tapestry which molds into a chorus-bridge that begs for repeated listens. The instrumental break tastefully showcases their virtuosity as Armstrong, Balducci, Muller, and Bremner trade off in a stormy passage that leads back into Horne's melodic verse which needs to be heard to be truly appreciated.

The rocker of the album, 'Headline', takes a look at some of the more aggressive and negative ways the media handle the news of the day: "Seedy correspondants get the story of the times, never really caring what was true". Aggressive guitar driven verses are juxtaposed by flowing acoustic based choruses on this track.

'Cry' is a poignant song which follows the life of a child growing up in a home with domestic violence. A genuinely moving piece as the child, although deeply affected by this upbringing, finds himself following in the footsteps of his abusive father.

Equally as touching is a song which features a quasi-duet between Horne and Susan Davis. Their harmonies are beautiful and evoke the pain of losing someone close but with promise that they will forever be "alive in my heart".

A live setting is where Schrodinger's Cat shines its brightest. Horne's charismatic stage presence combined with Armstrong and Balducci's solid rhythm section and Muller and Bremner's atmospheric and visual lead playing form a passionate performance which rivals that of veteran arena touring acts.

By developing aspects of their influences, Schrodinger's Cat has refined their talents to produce a brilliant and original style of songwriting that combines both the instrumental virtuosity of progressive rock with thoughtful, yet commercially acceptable vocals and melodies to form a fresh and inspiring songwriting style.

-Brad Parmerter

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Reviews


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Don Becker

A fantastic sophomore effort
Progressive rock fans will know these guys as Poughkeepsie's "house band", since they've opened for everyone from Marillion to Spock's Beard. John Wesley fans may know them as the Wesfest backing band. But make no mistake - Schrodinger's Cat stands out on their own merits.

This, their second self-produced album, is a 50-minute audio treat, from lead vocalist Michael Horne's a capella intro to "Freedom" to the playground samples that close "Cry". Not a bad song on the album. Prog fans especially will enjoy "Same Old Storm", "See Through Me" and the title track, as well as the interplay between Paul Bremner's guitar and PJ Muller's keyboards. Jon Balducci and Mike "Junior" Armstrong prove to be one of the best rhythm sections you've never heard but should.
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Tim O'neel

schrodinger's cat is an answer to a question yet to be asked
schrodinger's cat takes the conventions of "prog" and makes them new. schrodinger's cat is the last hope for true rock. schrodinger's cat has released a new album that confirms them as the title-holders in the League of Serious Bands. schrodinger's cat has released a new album with textures ranging from shattering-glass guitars to diamond-hard and sharp percussion to wet velvet keyboards to a churning undertow of guitars back to a slicing riptide of guitars back to another smoothly-spread layer of keyboards.

the latest gift from this extraordinary band shows them futher exploring their musical heritage (i.e.: marillion, kansas, etc.) but this time around, the band risks a leap into a void of uncertainty--some songs, particularly the hard-driving "headline," feature tonal and chord structures faintly reminiscent of fairport convention's efforts in the mid-1970's, but the comparisons absolutely stop there, as schrodinger's cat manages, with this newest album, to lead the listener to an altogether new place. potter's field.

those who have seen any of this material played live attest that it is truly scat's most dynamic songwriting yet. this is a band that is ready for major touring. this is a band that, with the right promotion, could rock major venues from coast to coast. schrodinger's cat could fill arenas, and entertain their devoted fans for far more than their money's worth.

the complex and saturating soundscapes created by p.j. muller's keyboard wizardry are the backbone of schrodinger's cat. on "potter's field," muller's mastery of the keys is not only reaffirmed, but showcased in an even more grand fashion than on the band's first, self-titled release. muller is an unparallelled talent, without whose contribution schrodinger's cat would be merely a rock band. muller's savant-like intuition for finding precisely the right notes and phrases is uncanny. when listening to muller's keyboard work for the first time, the listener experiences an epiphany, not unlike a new birth. the listener finds him or herself reborn in a new skin of almost intolerably heightened sensory awareness.

if you do not purchase "potter's field," you are depriving yourself. if you do not purchase copies for your friends and loved ones, you obviously do not truly care about them. schrodinger's cat is a band that needs to be heard, as an amputee needs morphine, as a shoe needs a foot, as a woman needs a man.

when you have bought "potter's field," you may never listen to anything else again. you may consider selling your entire music collection in order to buy a better sound system for listening to your new schrodinger's cat disc.

the entire history of human expression in music has pointed toward "potter's field" by schrodinger's cat; the sum of human achievement and discovery in music has brought us, at last, to this perfect collection of songs: "potter's field" by schrodinger's cat.
































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Troy

John Cage of "Ally McBeal" fame would approve !
"Potter's field" is my introduction to the music of Schrodinger's Cat, an oddly named progressive rock outfit from the mean streets (?) of Poughkeepsie, New York. From the opening chords of "Freedom", this 1998 recording draws the listener in and exercises a mesmeric hold that doesn't let up until the final fade, leaving its audience thoroughly overwhelmed, richer for the experience and hungry for more. Contrary to what is suggested elsewhere on this page, I see no great resemblance to the likes of Kansas, Saga or Genesis (who are among my all-time favorites), other than an uncanny talent for producing riveting songs and the virtuoso musicianship that is undeniable with each of SC's individual members. Theirs is a brand of symphonic rock that displays a rare combination of finesse and bravado, performed with such heart and consummate skill as to belie the band's "obscure" (read: non-celeb, non-headliner) status.


Leaving aside a brief guitar instrumental entitled "Twelve strings", "Freedom" is the first of a batch of 8 top-notch compositions to showcase all of the finer qualities that characterize "Potter's Field" and designate it a highlight in the genre. Michael Horne's powerful, emotive lead vocals and P.J. Muller's lush keyboard textures strongly determine the band's overall sound, most vividly reminding me of both Egdon Heath (circa "The killing silence") and For Absent Friends, two outstanding acts at the vanguard of the Dutch progressive rock movement. The fluency of the music achieved through an exceptional level of artistry seemingly contradicts the intricacy of its arrangements, which show that the word "predictable" is not in their vocabulary. Somewhat in the vein of Rush, the acoustically driven "Same old storm" turns on a dime halfway through the song to allow for a harder rocking passage alternated by a flurry of the superb guitar and keyboard interplay that is SC's strongsuit and a recurring feature throughout the entirety of the album. Semiballad "All I need" is propelled by percussion on a delicate layer of keys. As on the majority of songs on offer, like the dreamy, slow-paced "Butterfly", Marillion is another stylistic template that comes to mind, mainly because of Paul Bremner's (at times) Steve Rothery-like guitar work. Due to its hardhitting chorus, "Headline" is the closest thing to a heavy rock song on this disc, without the band compromising their predilection for exquisite, free flowing melodies. "See through me" is a finely crafted, gripping tune lifted onto a higher plane by Bremner's superlative six-string antics. More than any other song on "Potter's field", the captivating, emotionally charged title track illustrates how Schrodinger's Cat brilliantly manage to evoke a mood reflecting the drama of the lyrics. Both P.J. Muller (this guy is definitely in the same league as fellow keyboard geniuses Mark Kelly and Erik Norlander…) and Michael Horne are at their awesome best on this infinitely subtle cut, which is the album's crowning glory, an instant prog rock classic that nestled in my mind from the getgo and has haunted me ever since. (Think I've worn out that "repeat" button !) Exploring the theme of domestic violence in an understated, thought-provoking manner, "Cry" is another prime example of how Schrodinger's Cat gets under your skin with a two-pronged assault of music and words, Bremner taking center stage once again as the album draws to a majestic conclusion......


Needless to say that after repeated listens I was more than simply impressed. Quite frankly, if music this stirring fails to move you, you oughta be checked for a pulse ! "Potter's field" is proof positive that Schrodinger's Cat is ready for the big time. Purchase it now and you'll be grateful you did…

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Rob Galardi

This is about as good as it gets
You'd never know this cd is a self produced independent release by listening to it. This band takes the best of their obvous influences like Marillion, Kansas and so on and have produced a very worthy release.

This album, or should I say cd, ranks among my favorites - period. If you want melodic - there is SAME OLD STORM, If you want a rockin tune - you have HEADLINE - If you've had a bad ending to a relationship and want to relate - you've got ALL I NEED and now more than ever - if you want thought provoking and patriotic - you most definitely have FREEDOM.

Michael Horne's vocals tell a story like a story shoud be told - Paul Bremner's guitar work is stunning - PJ Mullers keyboards are as they should be - heard but not overblown as they are in many a progressive band - Mike Armstrong's bass work is so balanced - you almost forget he's there and finally John Balducci's drumming is simply powerful - yet once again not overblown.

There are so many lesser talented, yet more successful bands out there with nowhere near the talent nor the ability to write such high quality - flowing works.........I can only hope that their third cd finds them the label they so deserve!!

rob galardi
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