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Progressive Rock CD Reviews

The Station Myth

The Station Myth

Review by Gary Hill

While this may not be the type of music you first associate with progressive rock, this fits pretty well into that category. This is moody music, but more along the lines of later Radiohead, modern Marillion and Blackfield. The vocals will certainly call to mind alternative rock before prog, but these guys have enough of the neo-prog thing going on to get them into that genre. While I’m not crazy about every song, this disc is fairly consistently strong. I look forward to hear what they follow this up with. It’s a great start.

This review is available in book format (hardcover and paperback) in Music Street Journal: 2006 Volume 5 at lulu.com/strangesound.

Track by Track Review
On The Mounain
Ambient sounds with a freeform percussion backdrop make up the musical texture for this. As it carries on weird lines of melody play over the top. The vocals on this feel like a distant sort of alternative rock, but the overall structure of the song with its ambient lines of melody call to mind prog rock more than anything else. This one is cool, although possibly not the best choice for disc opener. It’s an intriguing marriage of prog and modern alternative rock.
Cinema
The dark atmosphere continues on this one. It has a more sparse arrangement and feels more like the more prog oriented Radiohead.
Buried In The Sound
A cool vocal arrangement begins this with an almost chant type sound. As the cut carries forward a texture that feels like a cross between modern alternative rock and fusion takes over to move it onward.
Goodbye or Good Night
This one feels like a cross between The Cure and Porcupine Tree or even modern Marillion. In some ways it’s far closer what people would normally think of as prog than anything we’ve heard thus far. Of the songs to this point it’s definitely my favorite.
Digger
“Digger” starts off with an odd Celtic texture. As the song proper takes it there is a really strange electronic mode mixed with this ethnic element. This one is a little too weird for my tastes, but it has its moments. The drum machine rhythmic structure seems a bit cheesy to me.
There Was A Hurricane
A very sedate and moody atmosphere pervades the opening segments of this one. While this piece is also weird the dark melody and sparse (almost psychotic) arrangement really works well. I’d have to say that as odd as this one is it’s one of my favorites on the disc. It reminds me in some ways of modern Marillion. Other than spacey textures, piano is the dominant instrument on this one.
She Can Reach
While atmospheric sounds start this, when it kicks into gear it is as one of the more rocking cuts here. While that is true this sound is still more in the terms of a modern progressive rock sound – once again think Radiohead. They drop it back from time to time towards the more sedate. This is another winner.
Sentences and Paragraphs
Another that rocks out quite a bit, this one is in some ways among the least prog like music on show here. Still the overlayers and general arrangement still pull it into similar territory as modern Marillion, Blackfield and Radiohead. It drops back to mellower sounds at points and overall this one is captivating. It’s another of my favorites from the disc.
The Man Who Pleased
Keys lead this one off. It’s another that has some of that Cure sound, but still there is a healthy dosage of modern moody progressive rock. This is a fairly sedate one, but also a very powerful piece of music. It’s another standout.
Atlas
Sound effects rise up gradually to start this. Then they bring in the first elements of melody, which rise ever so slowly. The vocals come in over a sparse arrangement. This is another moody one. As they add more layers to this treatment it becomes more lush. I like this cut a lot (it might be my favorite on the album) and it makes for a great disc closer. Acoustic guitar provides some wonderful melody in the later parts of this track.
 
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