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Froskull

Froskull

Review by Gary Hill

One doesn’t usually think of progressive rock coming from Nashville, but that’s just where these guys call “home.” Of course, some might argue that this isn’t progressive rock. I’d say that’s a pretty tough call to make, but for those who think anything that doesn’t sound like 1979 isn’t prog, I suppose it fits. These guys have a modern progressive rock sound, but it’s also tempered with alternative rock, vintage prog and more. Whatever you call this or however you slice it, though, it’s great stuff.

This review is available in book format (hardcover and paperback) in Music Street Journal: 2014  Volume 5 at lulu.com/strangesound.

Track by Track Review
A Thousand Years

Somehow the playful keyboard part that opens this makes me think of Genesis a little. The guitar brings a little crunch to the table, but it’s definitely prog, not metal. I guess the closest comparison on this tune is probably Spock’s Beard, but things like It Bites! also lands in the influence category here. Even King’s X could be mentioned. There is a section later in the track that brings some definite metal to the table. This is a very diverse and dynamic cut really.

Wait
Seeming to come out the last song, some seriously scorching guitar is heard on the introduction here. It drops way down to a sparse arrangement after a time, though. Vocals come in over the top of this and the cut moves forward. This piece has some changes, but is shorter and less dynamic than the opener.
Alabaster
There is some psychedelia in the mix on the introduction here, but this works out to another high energy prog jam. It’s modern progressive rock with a lot of shifts and turns and plenty of nods to classic prog. This instrumental is quite cool, really.
Should Have Known
A fairly short song, this is packed with progressive rock, but also features some alternative rock in the mix. It’s a rather accessible and cool one. 
Bardo 1
This short instrumental is a bit strange, but also very cool.  
The Road to Sto-Vo-Kor
A song inspired by the Klingons of “Star Trek” fame, I love this. Of course, I belong to a group called “Klingon Armada International,” so the lyrical theme gets bonus points here. This is a killer tune that’s proggy, theatrical and rocks. The mid-track instrumental section is keyboard dominated and rather fusion like at first. Then a killer guitar based jam takes it.
Bardo 2
This short instrumental is electronic and very cool. It calls to mind dance music just a little bit. It does have a metallic section built into it, too.
Report from Ganymede
Another with science fiction themes built into it, this is one of the highlights of the set. The song is complex and dynamic. It has some rather metallic moments, but also mellower ones. It creates a lot of drama and power while still managing to be very accessible.
Paramatman
Keyboard sounds start this, but the cut works out to more of a prog ballad approach for the first vocals. It works through some shifts and changes throughout, but is a pretty cohesive number.     
Bardo 3
The complex, multi-layered vocal arrangement on this track really steals the show. This is great stuff.
Perihelion
This rocks out harder than a lot of the stuff here. Still, it’s decidedly progressive rock and has some cool shifts and changes. There are mellower moments, too.
Bardo 4
The closing keyboard based instrumental is electronic music that leans toward dance.
 
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