Greg Northrup    15-July-2001 Adonis

This isn't a bad album, but it's also not something I really have any need to listen to again. Basically, Anyone's Daughter plays a watered down version of mid-period Eloy. It's decent symphonic progressive with some nice moments, but overall uninteresting. The lyrics are fairly bad, but although I've heard a lot about the vocalist's German accent being distracting, it's certainly no worse than Frank Bornemann's vocals from Eloy. They actually sound fairly similar.

This band plays symphonic German prog with more of a neo-prog edge in that is has more vocals, is more streamlined, and less instrumentally complex, although it certainly has little to do with any Genesis or Marillion clones. The "Adonis" suite is pretty good, and the fourth section actually has some very nice playing and soaring guitar licks. There are actually quite a few nice moments throughout the album, but overall nothing to get excited about here. This is certainly below the level of other excellent German symph bands like Novalis, Eloy or Grobschnitt.

Sjef Oellers 19-Jan-2001 Adonis / s/t / In Blau

Anyone's Daughter released their first album Adonis in 1979. The album contains romantic symphonic progressive rather typical for its time. The band seems influenced by Phil Collins-era Genesis. Emphasis is on guitar/synth interplay. The rhythm section is OK, but not particularly exciting. The first side of the LP contains the four-part suite "Adonis" with airy symphonic rock and a central role for weeping guitar solos and thin, spacey synths. The short, more fusion-inflected second part of the suite reminds me of Atoll or Finch. This part is pretty good and more lively, but lasts far too short. Most of the "Adonis" suite is a lot more mellow and would have interested me more if a more energetic approach was chosen. The other LP side contains a few longish tracks, but basically it features more mellow, symphonic progressive. For my tastes, Adonis is a bit too lame and lacks originality. While not a bad album, this is rather average symphonic rock. Still, if you love symphonic progressive or neo-progressive, you could probably like Adonis a lot.

The following, self-titled album (1980) shows them moving to an even more accessible sound. To me this album sounds very much like pop-ish neo-progressive. The music has rather straight rhythms, cliché melody lines and unimaginative soloing. Basically this is highly standardized, uninspired music. This album is a poor representation of symphonic progressive.

I have not heard their third album Piktor's Verwandlungen, which is supposedly their best. The fourth album In blau is a slight improvement on their second album, but still nothing to get excited about. The band still sounds like a watered-down, late 70's Yes/Genesis version. Some energetic solos form a relief from the otherwise rather lame mood on the album. I would recommend none of their albums, but Adonis is worth a try if you like melodic symphonic rock. I would suggest starting with the better works of Grobschnitt, Novalis or Eloy from the 70's before giving this band a try.

Peter Thelen    21-March-2001 5 titles

Anyone's Daughter - "Adonis" (WMMS 025, 1979/1993, CD)
Anyone's Daughter - "Anyone's Daughter" (WMMS 027, 1980/1993, CD)
Anyone's Daughter - "Piktors Verwandlungen" (WMMS 033, 1981/1993, CD)
Anyone's Daughter - "In Blau" (WMMS 029, 1982/1993, CD)
Anyone's Daughter - "Neue Sterne" (WMMS 031, 1983/1993, CD)

Anyone's Daughter was one of a group of late '70s German symphonic bands who brought forth a highly melodic rock, colorful and saturated with emotion. Their vocal harmonies were strong, sometimes reminiscent of the Moody Blues, and instrumental parts, while not complex or particularly stellar, were nonetheless powerful, where multi-layers of guitars and keys set up a moody milieu in which their melodies could flourish. Although at times they recall Eloy, a closer comparison would be (at least instrumentally) to the earlier music of their fellow countrymen Grobschnitt, circa Rockpommel's Land or Merry Go Round.

The first album Adonis from '79 is perhaps the best known of the bunch, and maybe one of the strongest: the sidelong four-part title track makes for a very impressive debut, twisting and turning through a labyrinth of changes over it's 26 minutes. Anyone's Daughter was a decent follow up, but doesn't measure up to the debut. It would also be the last album where the lyrics were in English. (actually, Last Tracks has some out-takes from the Adonis period where the vocals are also in English).

Piktors is primarily an instrumental album, and an amazing one at that, containing lengthy suites tied together by short bits of narration based on words of Hermann Hesse. Here they stretch out as a band and show what they can do when not constrained by the song format. In Blau is the band's first album of songs sung in German, and quite possibly the most powerful of the lot - although a bit more polished and refined: it's opening track "Sonnenzeichen - Feuerzeichen" could be one of their best tracks ever, with a powerful throbbing bass and whining guitar leads sailing all over the spectrum. With Neue Sterne, their sound became considerably more accessible, yet not to the point of compromising their sound. Still, it is probably the least impressive of the five. For starters I'd have to recommend either Adonis or In Blau; second, find Piktors, then fill in the others if you're so inclined.

(Originally published in Exposé #3, p. 14, Edited for Gnosis 3/20/01)

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