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(46:11, Progressive Promotion Records)
TRACK LIST: 1. Blue Caress 6:34 2. Longing for Home 5:06 3. Cry Me No Tears 7:10 4. Hourglass 5:30 5. Stay 4:17 6. I Will Never 4:29 7. Thief 4:27 8. Million Light Years 8:38 LINEUP: Piotr Trypus - guitars, vocals Tomasz Kryjan - guitars Piotr Ignatowicz - bass Sergiusz Pruszynski - drums with: Piotr Polak - guitars Pawel Ambrozewicz - keyboards Natasza Topor - violin
Prolusion. Polish band STARSABOUT was formed back in 2011, and following an initial EP in 2014 they released their debut album "Halflights" in 2016. One year later the band was signed to German label Progressive Promotion Records, who released their second album "Longing for Home" towards the tail end of the year.
Analysis. While Starsabout are signed to a label specializing in progressive rock, Starsabout as a band are among those constellations that have more of a diluted attachment to progressive rock as such. One can hear the ties and attachments to the genre, but as a whole totality this is a band that is more about indie rock than progressive rock as such. The compositions are fairly straight forward affairs, with a slight tendency to include gentler, dream-laden passages in certain parts of the song, otherwise pace and momentum stick pretty much in one gear only. Slight pace alterations come and go along the way of course, but in terms of structure there isn't too much of what you'd expect from a progressive rock band here. Twilight mood, softly dark melancholia is what this band delivers though, and they are good at it. Soft, shimmering guitar textures adds a slight touch of post-rock and psychedelia to the proceedings, while the steady bass and drums at times gives the material something of a post-punk or new wave vibe. The vocals tends to emphasize this, which in sum gives this production something of a mainstream touch throughout. As far as progressive rock references goes, the more atmospheric laden creations of Airbag is a possible reference. If Airbag ever started to hit an indie rock vein I would expect material like this to appear. A few of the songs here actually comes across as singer/songwriter creations given expanded arrangements, if that comes across as a clue on what to expect from this album. This is a quality production throughout, showcasing a band keenly aware of their strengths and sticking to their main selling points as I experience this creation. A worthwhile production - as long as you do not come at it with the expectation to discover progressive rock in any of it's many guises.
Conclusion. If you tend to enjoy bands that have something of a foundation in mainstream pop and rock music that expands their palette by incorporating subtle touches pulled from progressive rock in general and modern era progressive rock in particular, Starsabout is a band that merits a check. Indie rock is perhaps the best description for the music on this CD, with a liberal amount of nods in the direction of new wave and post-punk, and subtle inclusions of post-rock and modern psychedelic rock details.
Progmessor: May 26th 2018
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