|New Zealand Music Month
||[May. 28th, 2014|08:04 pm]
I was actually going to write a bit more this month but had a succession of Things Happening. This includes getting a manuscript in the email early on in the month, of an upcoming book for which I'm doing a little background helping of the writer with their research. Which I really need to get back to, as well.
But I can't let the month go by without at least one music article. (There may be more, but it's strictly Do Not Hold Your Breath). So here is a short review of one of my latest musical purchases... the Peter Snell Experience's "Life in the Controposphere".
I've seen the Peter Snell Experience live a couple of times now. Each time they've played one or two songs. This might sound like a short listen, but it isn't... each set lasted about half an hour. Yes... this bunch of students from my old high school (as of last year, at least, so their average age can't be more than about 18) have happily re-invented progressive rock.
As such, it's actually really good. The band do have definite influences - the first track on the album is in parts reminiscent of Tool, and the fourth (and last - the tracks average at around 18 minutes) track vaguely reminds me of the couple of Dream Theater tracks I listened to on You Tube recently after one of the guys at work tried the traditional "if you like x, then you might want to give y a listen" routine on me.
The third track is the real stand-out here, though. (It's the one they've played most often live, at the concerts I've been to; and also the shortest, although at just under 16 minutes long it's definitely a relative value of 'short'.) The first section is one of the band's most laid-back and melodic pieces; about five minutes in, it takes an abrupt left turn into a jazz/swing-influenced section, which in turn builds up into a full-volume section incorporating themes from both of the earlier parts.
The track titles (and the division of them into Acts I to IV) indicate that there's a larger theme or concept involved, but in the absence of a lyric sheet it's not one that I can decipher just yet from the few listens I've had of the music. The album's only available electronically - although considering it's length that's understandable, it would just about fit on a single CD but in the days of a vinyl it would have to be a double LP - and on a 'name your price' pay-what-you-think-is-fair basis.
Album available here. Complete with cover art that has me alternately reminiscing about how "Red Sails in the Sunset" really was a rather good album, and wanting to say "are you my mummy?"...