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Progressive Rock CD Reviews

Vie Jester

Etches in Aether

Review by Gary Hill

I consider this progressive rock, but it’s definitely modern prog. There is a lot of alternative rock in the mix. It sometimes leans toward the metallic end of the spectrum like Dream Theater and similar acts. It gets some jazzy moments, though. It also leans toward nu-metal at times. No matter the mix of sounds, though, this is quite an effective set.

This review is available in book format (hardcover and paperback) in Music Street Journal: 2015  Volume 3 at lulu.com/strangesound.

Track by Track Review
Saint

The alternative rock turned electronic section that starts this is classy. It shifts out to some powerhouse metallic rock from there. This is a killer track that’s accessible and meaty at the same time. There is a killer proggy section mid-track and a great electronic prog movement even later in the piece. The closing instrumental section is decidedly metallic prog with a definite leaning toward fusion.

Hollow Graffiti
The riff that leads this (and carries a lot of it) is decidedly off-kilter and proggy. The whole piece really makes me think a lot of Dream Theater. The vocal performance is exceptional on this powerhouse. The section around the two minute mark is so cool and so prog oriented that it’s ridiculous. That gives way to more melodic prog stuff. It does shift more toward metallic later, though.
Meridians
There is more alternative rock in the mix here. It’s still got some proggy changes and elements, though. There are also signs of metal and more on this number. Overall, this is the last prog-related thing here. If it were all like this, I would land this under progressive rock. Still, it’s a killer tune with some great instrumental work. There are some space elements that show up just a little late in the piece.
Dig It
Jazzy sounds and alternative rock blend on this melodic number. I love the multiple layers of vocals. There are some great melodic musical moments, too. It gets more rocking later along the ride.
Amplify
This lands closer to the territory of nu-metal. Although this one is less progressive than some of the earlier piece, it still has some elements and leanings in that direction.
 
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