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Progressive Rock CD Reviews

Poor Genetic Material


Review by Gary Hill

This ;latest disc from Poor Genetic Material continues their tradition of creating strong progressive rock. I think this album might lean more heavily on the modern variety than past releases have, but it does still have old-school leanings. They seem to have manage to really up the emotional aspect of the music, too. All in all, this is a great addition to their catalog.

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Track by Track Review
The Colour Of Happiness
The album starts with drums. Keyboards come over the top of that as it continues. Then a more full band treatment emerges. There is a cool, electronic, psychedelic, jazzy groove on hand here. The vocals come over the top of that backdrop, and the track continues to evolve and grow. This is a cool, moody modern prog song with plenty of jazzy vibes at play.
At almost 15-and-a-half-minutes long, the title track is the epic of the set. The track starts mellow and builds upward slowly. The vocals come in over the top of a dramatic, slow moving and pretty arrangement. It's packed full of passion. It eventually builds out into more up-tempo and rocking music. They lose no passion in the process. There is a tasty, melodic guitar solo around the halfway point of the track. Then keyboards take the center seat for a time. The guitar takes control again, with some rather Gilmour-like playing. Synthesizer emerges from there with an answer. We're brought back into the vocal section of the piece with a dramatic and almost metallic section. It gets into more powerhouse prog territory from there. As the vocals again drop away more classy, soaring prog takes over on the next instrumental movement. They drop down to a very mellow and intricate section based around keyboards and acoustic guitar around the 11-minute mark. The eventually move it back out into driving prog rock arrangement further down the road.
The Star
Emotional, melodic progressive rock of the modern variety is the idea here. This is another classy track. Mellower modes take over later in a rather moody, but quite effective, arrangement.
Dramatic mellower music is on the menu at the start of this cut. This grows out into more rocking stuff after a time. This is a rich progressive rock piece that covers a lot of ground. It has both modern and classic elements built into it. 
Comfort And Pain
I really dig the energy and groove of this song. It's a modern prog cut with a mainstream feeling at its core. There is an evocative instrumental movement later that comes at a peak. It's so strong and features both captivating synthesizer and guitar work.
Pages Turning
Keyboards are a bit part of the arrangement on this track. It has a mellower, moody mode. There are some vaguely jazzy things at play here. This is another classy example of modern progressive rock.
Intricate and lush prog textures are the backdrop as guitar paints some lines of melody over the top. The vocals come in over this sedate backdrop. It begins to grow gradually upward from there. It feels like might power upward, but instead it drops to just piano. Then bass joins after a time, and the whole thing evolves into a jam that feels a little like Synergy. That builds to a somewhat more powered up prog arrangement for the return of the vocals. It shifts to a killer melodic movement as a continuation of the vocal movement. The instrumental section drives upward to a harder rocking peak that serves as a false ending. The intricate and dramatic sounds come back in for the next vocal section. They continue to evolve the piece before it ends. This is one of my favorites here, making it a great choice for album closer.
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