Daniel Amos – Fearful Symmetry – 1986

It is amazing to consider that within a year the conclusion of the Alarma Chronicles will be celebrating its 25th anniversary. 25 years ago one of the most impressive, ambitious and amazing four album series came to an end with a work of sheer art. Each album was unique musically with Fearful Symmetry being the darkest, brooding and mysterious of the four. Following the significantly more new wave “pop” of Vox Humana, FS was shocking, intriguing and…well…fearful. The majority of the album deals with darker subjects like death, pain and loss and the musical soundscape of ethereal vocals and sweeping and weeping keyboards envelope the listener in the dark cloud of the content. That is not to say that the album is replete of hope or grace, but actually just the opposite. It is through the valley of this projects the light that does shine through appears that much brighter. Terry Scott Taylor’s admiration of and inspiration by William Blake is the strongest on this project. From the album title to the most haunting song, Sleep Silent Child, the album is filled with images and direct quotations from Blake. The album does close with the stunningly simple and beautiful lullaby or sorts, Beautiful One. This one hearkens back to Taylor’s solo projects with the sing-songy simplicity and lush keyboard strings and Taylor’s lilting higher register. It is the perfect ending to the “chronicles” as it’s message about the eternal hope of all Christians to find themselves in the arms of the Beautiful One upon their death. I remember when the album was released the number of complaints we received were almost exclusively related to the naked man (from the waist up) on the album cover. Those that complained obviously never listened to nor understood the content of the project or the complaints may have been drastically different. More keyboard driven and music less guitar oriented. the album reflected much of the European alternative music of the day like Depeche Mode, Alphaville, etc but also shows reflections of art rock music of Genesis and Pink Floyd. Not immediately accessible or as warmly received as the first four projects, the album eventually became regarded as one of the best of the Daniel Amos catalog.

Contributor David Lowman – https://ccms500bestalbums.wordpress.com/

Tracklist
1 – A Sigh For You – 3:58
2 – The Pool – 3:47
3 – Sleep Silent Child – 4:38
4 – Neverland Ballroom – 3:17
5 – Strong Points, Weak Points – 3:55
6 – Instruction Thru Film – 3:20
7 – When Moonlight Sleeps (On The Frosted Hill) – 3:55
8 – Sudden Heaven – 3:23
9 – Shadow Catcher – 4:32
10 – Beautiful One – 3:33

Credits
Arranged By [All Arrangements By] – DA
Art Direction, Layout – Mr. Ed (McTaggart)
Backing Vocals – Crystal Lewis (tracks: B2, B5), Jerry Chamberlain (tracks: A5, B5)
Design Concept [Cover Concept] – DA
Drums, Percussion, Synthesizer [Synthesizers] – Ed McTaggart
Electric Bass, Double Bass [Upright Bass], Bass [Electric Twelve-String Bass], Guitar [Guitars] – Tim Chandler
Keyboards, Snare [Snares] – Rob Watson (tracks: A3)
Lead Guitar [Lead Guitars], E-Bow [E-Bo], Synthesizer [Synthesizers], Organ [Pump Organ], Dulcimer, Mandolin – Greg Flesch
Mastered By – John Matousek
Narrator – Jerry Chamberlain (tracks: B1)
Percussion – Alex MacDougall (tracks: B2, B5)
Photography By [Band Photos By] – Linda Dillon Baley
Photography By [Photographics By] – Ken Baley
Photography By, Photography By [Photographics By] – Derrill Bazzy
Producer – DA, Terry Taylor
Recorded By, Mixed By – Dave Hackbarth, Doug Doyle, Terry Taylor
Synth [Synth Treatments] – Dave Hackbarth (tracks: A1, B3), Doug Doyle (tracks: A1, B3)
Text By [¡Alarma! Chronicles Text Volume 4 By] – Greg Flesch, Terry Taylor
Vocals, Guitar [Guitars], Harmonica, Synthesizer [Synthesizers] – Terry Taylor

Companies, etc.
Distributed By – The Benson Company
Distributed By – The Master’s Collection
Phonographic Copyright (p) – Frontline Records (3)
Copyright (c) – Frontline Records (3)
Published By – Broken Songs
Recorded At – 3-D Studios, Costa Mesa CA.
Mastered At – Hitsville

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Author: David Lowman

Owner and writer at CCM's 500 Best Albums Of All Time. https://ccms500bestalbums.wordpress.com/

One thought on “Daniel Amos – Fearful Symmetry – 1986”

  1. I just discovered this blog and all i can say is awesoooooomeeee! I’m a blogger and CCM enthusiast. I have your blog pinned in one of my blogs so I can catch up with all your posts.

    I absolutely love this Daniel Amos album and agree with your observations

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