Studio Album by released in 2010
Progress's tracklist:
The Flood
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Pretty Things
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Happy Now
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Underground Machine
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What Do You Want From Me?
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Eight Letters
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Progress review

Take That is together again moving up and forward

The greatest thing has happened in the pop music world of the turn of the centuries – Robbie Williams has reunited with Take That! Twenty years back in time these guys immediately became idols of millions of girls who thought the line-up of Gary, Mark, Robbie, Jason and Howard was perfect, but the group disbanded in five years after the debut as a result of internal conflicts whose main source was Robbie Williams. No matter how desperately the girls would hope for his returning he took up the solo career actively and turned into a mega star. Take That came back as a four-piece in 2006 and made it to create several new hits in spite of the space in its line-up. Yet the things have changed in 2010. At first Robbie Williams and Gary Barlow recorded two singles included in the compilation In And Out Of Consciousness: Greatest Hits 1990-2010. The most sensitive fans could faint in delight on hearing that for it practically guaranteed a new album soon to be released by all the five. In fact the new work has not made us wait too long – overcoming the old difficulties Take That is together again moving up and forward with the album Progress whose title is speaking for itself.

The vocals definitely play the central role on Progress

Take That’s first albums were sunny, full of young confessions, spring feelings and desperate sadness. Today the boys band has turned into that of men, they have survived conflicts and reconciliation, there has appeared in their music. The new album also offers quite serious compositions, sometimes optimistic, sometimes neutral, but always melodious, with high quality arrangements. The vocals definitely play the central role, however – the duets of Robbie Williams with Gary Barlow, with Mark Owen, the voices of all the vocalists’ together create amazingly familiar harmonies arousing the most pleasant emotions of listeners. The first single The Flood is started by Robbie Williams whose voice has been so wanted, it is a vivid and memorable pop anthem, while SOS is a more danceable composition with a tough electronic beat and dark lyrics. Keyboards, fiddle sounds and electronic effects refine the slightly sad mid-tempo number Wait, whereas Kidz once again offers a heavy marching beat and high notes in the vocal parts. The song Pretty Things built on a faultless bass line conquers with a wonderful tune and the voices of Williams who is on the leads and the backing vocals of the rest of the members, and the house number What Do You Want From Me? will easily become the next hit. The album closes with almost-a-ballad Eight Letters with a synthesizer arrangement, splendid harmonies on vocals and interesting love lyrics with a bright imagery.

One of the year’s best pop releases

So Progress is the first album after 15 years of Robbie Williams’ absence in his native collective. This fact only makes it the even of the year, if not of an entire music era. If we imagine that those changes had never taken place, that Robbie had never felt the happiness of solo success, that the group had remained together how long would their energy charge last? It is quite probable that the songs on Progress are so good exactly due to all these twists and turns the band has overcome which is why the album is destined to be a success. The musicians have recently announced a fore coming Great Britain tour which will be probably followed by the world one. The band’s fans have been waiting for these concerts for such a long time that Take That music has become different. Each of Progress’ ten tracks leaves unforgettable impressions, and though there are no ballads characteristic of the band among them but only shining mid-tempo and danceable compositions this ultra contemporary and endlessly stylish work is one of the year’s best pop releases.

Alexandra Zachernovskaya (18.11.2010)
Rate review4.76
Total votes - 184

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