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The cutting edge of Progressive Metal
Picture a British band, playing progressive hard rock, in the style of Dream Theater. Now, picture two lead guitarists who are more jazz influenced than John Petrucci. Next, add a vocalist that I really cannot compare to anyone, Jos Geron doesn’t seem to sing operatically, he uses a lot of effects on his voice, but I don’t find them to be too distasteful, great accents though. Add a solid bassist and great drum work and you would have Linear Sphere.
This album definitely scores well for musicianship and production. After reading the biography on their website, it wasn’t too surprising to see that most of the musicians in this group went to some sort of music school, or have some form of training in their respective fields. I bet these guys put out their own instructional videos.
The album starts off with an 11 minute track. Linear Sphere seem to go off in tangents. The first song reminded me of Dream Theater. The second song, “Father Pyramid”, definitely seems like they were going for a Meshuggah vibe. The one thing i keep coming back to with the work of Linear Sphere is the guitar solos. The guitar work of Martin Goulding and Charlie Griffiths of Linear Sphere is amazing. Goulding and Griffiths pick so cleanly, it’s quite ridiculous. The bass work by David Marks reminds me of a prog metal band from the 80′s called Watchtower because of the choice in harmony and bass tone. The drum work of Nicolas Lowczowski reminds me of Mike Portnoy,Steve Gadd, Virgil Donati and maybe even Sean Reinert. Linear Sphere have a great ability to play odd time syncopated parts in their songs. I don’t know if I would even call this a metal album. There are elements of metal present, but it feels more like a progressive jazz project.
I personally, think it is great work on a lot of levels. Specifically, the way the instruments are played, and the way the vocals are done. I also have to give Linear Sphere credit, this is a great achievement for a first album. I believe it was self financed and produced by the band. For Reality Dysfunction to sound the way it does is quite amazing. I would recommend LS to fans of bands like Spiral Architect, Dream Theater, and also fans of fusion jazz. To those of you out there that have patience to sit through a 65 minute progressive fusion album, pick this up. Quite refreshing!