I first discovered Kaipa about a decade ago when I was really into The Flower Kings and was exploring their various side projects. The Flower Kings frontman Roine Stolt was a member of Kaipa during the late 70s (when he was only 17), and during their reformation in the early 2000s, but left after their 2005 album Mindrevolutions. Children of the Sounds, out on September 22nd, is now the eighth album since Kaipa’s return, and thirteenth overall.
The dynamic between Patrik Lundström’s and Aleena Gibson’s vocals is quite powerful and something that has always stood out to me … Read more
Some albums come along and pleasantly join the ranks of what you previously considered “great music”. Some albums come along and make you question everything you previously classified as “great music”. The Hirsch Effekt’s fourth full-length, Eskapist, is the latter kind of album – a towering post-hardcore monolith that reaches a mountaintop I never imagined to be climbable, from which the view makes most other modern progressive acts look like ants.
The Hirsch Effekt are one of those bands whose sound cannot be tidily summarized in a couple of adjectives. Their own bandcamp liberally describes them as “rooted … Read more
The Room Colored Charlatan guitarist Justin Seymour is about to release his first solo EP Ineffable on August 25th under the name Bodhi. This short but sweet offering of melodic instrumental prog is reminiscent of Plini and Animals as Leaders. The first track ‘Desire’ starts off with an atmospheric synth which is then joined by some pleasant melodic guitars, drums, and piano. The layered guitars sound amazing but the keyboard sounds great too and compliments the guitars well. For being completely a one-man operation, it is quite impressive. The title track ‘Ineffable’ is the longest on … Read more
Milco is the most Animals as Leaders-like non-Animals as Leaders project I’ve listened to, recently. The debut EP of Raymond Milco, 練馬 (Nerima), is full of bittersweet technical djent riffs, with the common thumping, tapping, and advanced chords that are often lazily called jazzy. The twenty-odd minutes of the EP are made out of intelligent composition and ingenious ideas; the songs flow more intuitively than on The Madness of Many, AAL’s latest endeavour. Of course, Ray doesn’t come near the levels of virtuosity displayed by Messrs. Abasi, Reyes, and Garstka, the skills of Milco are more than appreciable and … Read more
Cybergrindr is a probably-solo project from British Columbia. It is one of the few bands whose name actually reflects the genre they play… and they do it very right! Cybergrindr’s cybergrind is far from mundane. They see the opportunities the genre brings them, and they take them. For example, they profit from the obviously-programmed drums to go beyond what would be realistic: on ‘The Overseer Has Come Online’, they use drum hits – seemingly kick drums – at superhuman speeds to create what we interpret as musical notes, with pitch and length. And even though it’s the only place where … Read more
The Mexican instrumental experimental metal trio Parazit recently released their newest album, Paradigm Paralysis. At first glance, you can already feel how the three are held together by the strong chemistry in the group. The overwhelming bass is front and centre, overdriven, and played aggressively. The drums are not too far behind, with their intelligent rhythms and careful timing supporting the stringed instruments in their wingless flight over strange territories. Last but not least, the guitar’s slew of effects help vary the sonic landscape and put in context the meanders of the bass and drums. The whole sounds like … Read more
In the world of progressive rock and metal, instrumental albums are pretty common so it’s a bit hard to stand out. Mammoth absolutely manage to do this with their new album Deviations. Impressive playing paired with amazing production quality and beautiful tones prove that these guys are at the top of their class.
The first song, ‘Entanglements’ sounds like an entanglement of instruments weaving wonderfully through each other. Impressive guitar arpeggios and solos are complemented by ambient keyboards and intense drums. The middle section of the song calms down with a bright clean section that builds back up into … Read more
Devin Townsend has gone many different musical places in his career, frequently doing something drastically different that what he’s done before, most notably on his first four albums in the Devin Townsend Project with Ki, Addicted, Deconstruction, and Ghost. Transcendence is no exception, as it takes his sound to a new level. On this album, Devin took input from the rest of the band, musicians he’s been working with for 10+ years, and relinquished some control to them. Because of this, the band sounds more united than on other recent DTP albums, like Epicloud and Sky Blue.
Karmakanic’s fifth studio album, Dot, is a progressive rock album inspired by recent writings by Carl Sagan. Frontman Jonas Reingold stated that this inspiration stemmed from Sagan’s quote about the picture of the earth that Voyager 1 took in 1990 from the outer areas of our solar system. “Look again at that dot. That’s here. That’s home. That’s us. On it everyone you love, everyone you know, everyone you ever heard of, every human being who ever was, lived out their lives. The aggregate of our joy and suffering, thousands of confident religions, ideologies, and economic doctrines, every hunter … Read more
Hailing straight from the country of Belarus, Eximperituserqethhzebibšiptugakkathšulweliarzaxułum gained attention to the public eye with their demo, in 2013, because of their absurdly lengthy and convoluted band name and song titles, but remained in our mind because their music was frankly good. They’re playing some [very] brutal death metal with a touch of tech-death and atmospheric thrown in for good measure. Moreover, behind the name lies hidden a very interesting, occult world and concept. It is, according to the band itself, an agglutinative neologism, with loans from Latin, Ancient Egyptian, Akkadian and Sumerian terms of “the Chaosatanic tradition”. I quote, … Read more