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Progressive Rock CD Reviews

Slow Burning Car

Vicarious Disclosures

Review by Gary Hill

I have liked and reviewed several previous albums from this act. I always put them under progressive rock. I'm doing that here. The thing is, while some of this falls into some fairly definite prog directions, it's more for the sense of experimentation present. Like the other releases, this is pretty amazing music that covers so much territory, often within the same song. I do have to comment a bit on the lyrics here. There are some conspiracy theorists things in some of the lyrics on the album. I really can't figure out if they are poking fun of the people who believe those things or are espousing them. If I was sure it was the latter, I would have steered clear of covering this release. I don't want to help promote that kind of disinformation. So, let's just say, take the lyrics with a grain of salt because I'm not sure which way they are meant to be taken.

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Track by Track Review
Shapeless Faceless
This comes in driving and fierce. They drive out from there with an arrangement that seems both metallic and proggy. It drops to a mellower section for the entrance of the vocals. The track continues to evolve and makes good use of both male and female vocals. At times I'm reminded a little of Phideaux. Don't get too comfortable anywhere as this continues to shift and change. I really love the almost technical metal movement.
Crime Minister
The rhythm section gets this going. The track turns toward an almost punk meets metal movement. After the introductory instrumental movement, it drops way down for the theatrical art rock vocals. There are some reggae vibes at play at times on this. I'm also reminded of Hawkwind to some degree. This is a dynamic cut with a lot of variations built into it.
A Winters Purge
There is a real driving metal groove as this track gets going. It drops to more of a modern prog sound to create the backdrop for the vocals. I like the cadence of some of the vocals on this so much. Again, I can hear Phideaux to some degree on this. It makes good use of balance between mellower and more rocking sounds.
Cyanide Planes
This is a dynamic and varied song with a lot of progressive rock, pop music and more in the mix. The choruses have a tendency to be super-catchy.
Hard Time Walking
Punky, hard-edged and driving, this is cool. The proggy elements are almost non-existent on this one.
Rocking female vocals are in the driver's seat here. This gets a parental advisory for the lyrics. It's a smoking hot number that makes me think of early Blondie. There is some killer guitar soloing on this, but this tune doesn't really have any prog in the mix. The bass gets to show off near the end.
(One For) Subtlety
Another punky number, this has some definite DEVO leanings in it. There are some art music things in the mix.
Feeling like a down-home blues track as it gets going, this turns punkier as it electrifies. It alternates between those two modes as it continues. This is a little goofy, but fun.
Wasted Years
This is an acoustic guitar based cover of Iron Maiden. Some of the guitar at the start of it makes me think of Steve Howe. This piece works remarkably well in this format. The arrangement gets some killer acoustic prog jamming later that works so well.
Rudderless Ship
This song is also built around an acoustic guitar arrangement. It definitely takes it in proggy directions, particularly with the overlayers of sound. It's another that makes great use of having both male and female vocals.
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Metal/Prog Metal
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