ProgressoR / Uzbekistan Progressive Rock Pages


Canvas - 2007 - "Digital Pigeon"


CANVAS is a studio project formed by Matt Sweitzer and Chris Cobel, and “Digital Pigeon” is the second recording from this US-based project band. On this release they have gathered 9 more musicians to record a total of 14 tracks. Musically, Canvas explores the lighter realm of the progressive world. Soaring but subtly used keyboards, synths floating in the background and acoustic guitars is what most of the tracks here have in common as their leading instruments. The bass guitar is also brought to the front, but without adding heaviness and umph as such to the tunes. Rather than creating epic-sounding melodies and rich soundscapes, mellow and laidback are good descriptions of how these instruments are utilized on most tracks. Vocal harmonies are another feature which further enhances the "light" feel of the songs offered here. And the vocals in general are utilized in the same way as the instruments, mellow and laid back. Delivering the melody is more important than using lots of vocal effects, it seems. As for musical styles, this album is a happy mix of mellow art rock and lighter fusion explorations, at times investigating close to easy listening / lounge music. And all but one track here is tinged rather heavily with ‘70s atmospheres and moods, the one exception (Catwalk) exploring a somewhat rougher ‘80s sound. As for similar artists, I can't personally pinpoint anyone in particular, as this is a type of music I'm not too familiar with myself. Other sources point in the direction of The Alan Parsons Project for similarities which, though, might or might not be useful information. This album as such isn't a strong release though, at least not in my opinion. There are quite a few good tracks here, Dark Side of the Sun and Ghost Town being the best in my opinion. The first 6 tracks here are all good, but the last 8 leave me rather cold. All fans and followers of the lighter and poppier prog rock that was released in the ‘70s should check this one out though, as that crowd certainly will enjoy this release better than me.

OMB: Agst 28, 2008

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