PALACE TERRACE – Flying Through Infinity

PALACE TERRACE - Flying Through Infinity
  • 7.5/10
    PALACE TERRACE - Flying Through Infinity - 7.5/10


Lion Music
Release date: November 16, 2007

User Review
0/10 (0 votes)

Unless you’re a guitar aficionado, the name George Bellas might not be a name easily recognized by mainstream music listeners. George cut his teeth with his guitar instrumental debut in mid 1997 as a pup for Mike Varney’s Shrapnel label. Since then George has grown quite a bit by releasing two more solo albums followed by several supporting roles that has filled out an impressive musical resume. His resume sports playing with such greats as UFO’s Phil Moog and Pete Way as well as Magellan, vocalist John West, keyboardist Vitalij Kuprij, Mark Boals’ Ring Of Fire, and several others.

Palace Terrace is a Neo-Classical/Progressive project with the George Bellas “stamp” printed all over it. In fact, with George doing the conceptualization, composing, orchestration, production, mixing, mastering, artwork, design, co-authoring of lyrics, performing some vocals and playing a multitude of instruments… one might suspect it’s another solo project with a couple of special guests. If it sounds complicated it’s because it is, but that’s a good thing. You see George takes great pride in using extensive odd meters, melodic vocal lines, rich harmonies, and big orchestrations. He’s not complacent to sound ordinary or mainstream. To be quite honest, the first time most people hear this release they are going to be taken aback by its uniqueness. The album will incite the same type of reactions that might have occurred when Queen unleashed “Bohemian Rhapsody” on the world. Be forewarned, this release takes several listens to absorb all that is taking placing with the percussion, vocals, orchestration, keys, chimes, guitar, etc. It’s definitely a complex work of art, not your typical guitar based Rock. It takes several spins to catch all the nuances running amok in these compositions and to appreciate them. This is definitely a CD worth listening to on headphones!

The theatrical aspects of the songs are characterized by several of the vocal techniques used throughout the release. Quite often tenor Jonathan R. Marshall’s vocals come across more as story telling versus singing which adds an unintentional uniqueness. Several of the vocal lines are also done as “rounds” or “fugues”. Rounds are songs where different voices come in at different times and they all harmonize (e.g. the technique many grade schools typically use to sing “Row, Row, Row Your Boat”).

Some of the highlights include the nine-minute opening opus “The Tenth Dimension” with its driving drum line and soft-spoken, melodic chorus. Then there’s “I Know Your Home” with its opening orchestration and chilling opening vocal harmony… “I know your home, I can see you in there, I can smell your perfume outside the door” before bursting into a high paced gallop. “Who Am I” starts off with an incredibly powerful melody and some great vocal harmonies.

Guitar-wise… this album’s not all about George’s guitar, so Neo-Classical Guitar Freaks might be slightly displeased, it’s more about compositions, artistry and storytelling. This by no means is intended to paint a pale guitar solo picture as there are several tasty guitar morsels found within these tracks, you just might have to work a little mentally to get to them. If you’re a listener who isn’t afraid of a little diversity and perhaps feel that Queen wasn’t completely wacky then this release is definitely worth a buy… just hang in there for a few listens and it’ll grab the composer within you!


George Bellas – Guitar, Bass, Percussion, Vocals, Lyrics
Jonathan R. Marshall – Vocals, Lyrics
Sasha Horn – Drums, Percussion


  • Scott Jeslis

    Scott is one of the partners at Metal Express Radio. He handles a lot of Metal Express Radio's public relations, screening of new music and radio scheduling. On occasion, he also does reviews and interviews. He has been a proud member of the Metal Express Radio crew since 2004.

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