(8/10) To date, there have been two crucial moments in Spock's Beard history. Of course there was the moment of foundation in 1993 when the Morse brothers, Neal and Alan, formed the band in Los Angeles. The second milestone was in 2002 when keyboarder and singer Neal Morse left the band to start a solo career, which brought very successful prog releases too. The question at that time was, if Spock's Beard could continue writing great music, considering the loss of such a creative source.
The good news was, that Spock's Beard could still keep a high level of songs and songwriting. Five more records could prove this and even though the band had some more changes in the line-up, it was constantly progressive music on a high level what the guys delivered.
The newest result of their creative work got the title "The oblivion particle" - a longplayer that comes with nine songs.
Listening to Spock's Beard bassist Dave Meros "it's not a matter of how much the album recalls past Spock's Beard's material, but how much it differs". And even though some parts are slightly differ from former releases it's still the fantastic mix of many different influences that makes the bands music special. Rock, prog, classic and jazz melt together. This has been Spock's Beard in the past and those trademarks also come back on "The oblivion particle".
The opener "Tides of time" is one of the typical tracks of the five-piece. It's a well chosen track since it opens the door to also some other stuff on the record.
A highlight on "The oblivion particle" is "The center line". The tune starts like a suite for piano before the song becomes a cineastic prog rocker. The track is complex without being complicated for the listener to follow. It is very melodic and catchy.
"Bennett build a time machine" is another cool track that reminded me in parts to Barcley James Harvest in the "Mocking bird" era. It's an epical and swinging number, telling a tale about time travelling. The track is full of great melodies that makes the number even more irresistable.
"Hell's not enough" convinces with great keyboard elements and is nicely accentutated with a flute. The vocallines are build on a beautiful melody that goes throughout the entire track. Next to that there is a constant increase of hardness. Beginning slow and fragile, the song is a rocking prog one toward the end.
Spock's Beard added another good album to their discography that has enough complexity to grow over time and that is on the other hand easy approachable. Even as not being a musicians you will find your way into this album.
- Tides of time
- Hell's not enough
- Bennett built a time machine
- Get out while you can
- A better way to fly
- The center line
- To be free again
Label: InsideOut Music
Genre: Prog Rock
Release Date EU: August 21st, 2015