I was the first contestant to vote in this one. Although I gave the albums three listens each, in this round, I had a very clear preference from the beginning. Here was my vote:
I liked the Pulsar a great deal. It's subtle and atmospheric. I enjoyed some of the tasteful flute work, and the mellotron and piano. The vocals were nice -- used sparingly, but effective. I definitely heard the similarities to Genesis, as well as bits that made me think of King Crimson, The Moody Blues and even Tangerine Dream. I also find the album to be a grower -- I like it better each time. This is actually one of my favorite albums I've heard in any of the prog contests so far.
The Fireballet certainly has a lot of other elements I liked. Along with the familiar classical riffs by people like Mussorgsky and Debussy, two composers I particularly enjoy, I certainly heard the ELP and Yes influences. Unfortunately, most of the parts of the album I liked best weren't the original parts, but the parts that were lifted wholesale from the classical composers. (And the vocalist in the first song reminded me uncomfortably of Monty Python's Michael Palin.)
The Fireballet was good, but the Pulsar was better than good. My vote is for Pulsar.
This one went back and forth, with Pulsar gaining an early lead, Fireballet going ahead, Pulsar coming back, then Fireballet going ahead again. But in the end:
Final Results: Pulsar 9 votes, Fireballet 6 votes