'Sagacity', given the requisite time it needs, is a masterpiece and Saga fans will just lap it up.

The dictionary definition of "sagacity" means "wisdom or discernment profound knowledge and understanding". That's quite a bold statement to make when choosing it for a new album title. That said, the band in question, Saga, do have almost forty years of recording and touring experience under their belts so maybe they know what they're talking about.

Now Saga are the type of act who polarizes opinions; you either love or hate them, there's no middle ground and 'Sagacity' will keep the Saga lovers and haters firmly in their respective camps. I was introduced to their music by my friend Phil Ashcroft many (many) years ago and I immediately fell into the love camp and I've been a lifelong fan ever since.

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You would therefore imagine that 'Sagacity' would and should be a no brainer for me as a long time fan, it wasn't. On the first few plays I found myself wondering what the band had gone and done to that "classic Saga sound", the one I have always loved and looked forward to hearing. In place of the multi-layered lush keyboards that I was expecting, I found instead Saga using prodigious amounts of acoustic guitar which gave the songs on 'Sagacity' a whole different flavour and texture. This, at first, made them hard to get into or if I'm honest even like.
Thank goodness then that I try never to make snap judgements when it comes to albums; listening to 'Sagacity' many more times helped me to find the charismatic and enchanting music that Saga have been known for slowly showing its head above the parapet. The melodies that I was looking for definitely need time to show their face and when 'Sagacity' finally clicks into place you soon find yourself listening to one of this band's best albums to date.

If you need a little more evidence as to the merits of 'Sagacity' then songs like the complex and intriguing 'I'll Be' with its acoustic guitar led intro, the catchy as hell 'On My Way' which is pure old school Saga or the completely weird yet wonderful 'Press 9', where Saga really show their true quirkiness, should all convince you that Saga are still a very powerful force in Prog Rock (see interview elsewhere). Even after thirty-five plus years in the business, their quintessential sound is one that still helps them standout from a very crowded field of players; the fact that they still have the hunger vitality and energy to keep on striving for perfection when they enter a studio to make new music is a wonderful thing.

'Sagacity', given the requisite time it needs, is a masterpiece and Saga fans will just lap it up.

Ian Johnson

Quelle: http://www.rocktopia.co.uk/index.php?option=com_content&view=article&id=5431%3Asaga-sagacity&catid=910%3Acd-reviews&Itemid=485

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