ProgressoR / Uzbekistan Progressive Rock Pages

[ SHORT REVIEWS | DETAILED REVIEWS - LIST | BANDLISTS ]


The Spur - 2017 - "Rebirth"

(50:59; The Spur)


*****+
 

TRACK LIST:                  

1. Prelude 1:45
2. The Second Age 8:07
3. Until the End 7:09
4. The Great War 6:31
5. Transcendence 7:58
6. Battlefield Redeemer 6:44
7. Monstrocity 11:21
8. When the Curtain Falls 1:24

LINE UP :

Volker Prass  vocals
Christian Schape  guitars
Gabriel Flossdorf  keyboards, organ, piano, synthesizers, accordion
Stefan Huth  touch guitars, keyboards, vocals
Stephan Schroth  drums, djembe, percussion, keyboards

Prolusion. German band The Spur is described as having its roots laid down back in 2012, and the band started to have a more public face from 2015 or thereabouts. Their debut album "Rebirth" appeared in 2017, and was self released by the band. This is the only album the band has available at the time of writing.

Analysis. The Spur is an easy band to place in terms of style and orientation. Good, old progressive metal is the name of the game for these guys. One with a few bells and whistles attached, but always staying very much safely inside of a progressive metal style and orientation. A distinct feature of the band is that they use a guitar sound that often comes across as being a bit on the primal side of matters. The instrument alternates between having a dirty, fuzzed out tone and timbre and a hard and smooth mode of delivery, but the overall effect in both modes is an instrument geared towards having more of a primal sound. This gives the music a bit of a simplistic feel at times, and while enhancing nerve and tension this will also, at least in part, mask the more technical side of the instrument performance. A specific trait of the band are floating guitar textures as overlays and as effects in use in instrumental parts, aspects which presumably are provided by the touch guitar. Keyboard overlays surge in and out of the composition here, and alternate with orchestral textures in terms of combining with the guitars to build arrangements with a more powerful and majestic feel to them. The keyboards provide the more sweeping and grandiose builds, while the orchestral textures add a more refined touch to the proceedings. The keyboards will also be used for more expressive displays, and in some of the songs they will also take the lead when the band opts to drop the metal for a bit and head straight into symphonic progressive rock territories. A feature explored in a bit more of an elongated manner on the epic length 'Monstrocity'. Unlike many progressive metal bands, The Spur have opted for a vocalist with more of a talk-like mode of delivery, and the vocals aspect of this album is one that for me is more in the passable department in general. The vocals function well, but don't have the qualities to lift, elevate or carry a song as such. This is a slight weakness in songs that would profit from having a more melodic and powerful singer, like the power-ballad oriented 'Battlefield Redeemed'. Otherwise I note that this is a concept album, where the topic is a science fiction story with what appears to be a bit of a dystopian inclination. A closed in mix and production gives this entire album a rather special mood and atmosphere throughout, and if that is something that may be regarded as an accidental weak point or if that is a planned effect to emphasize certain aspects of the concept being explored is something I do not know. This is a case where it could be either one or the other - or both. It does give the album experience a bit of a special feel of course, and it will obviously be a subjective matter whether this is intriguing or not.

Conclusion. German band The Spur explore a kind of somewhat primal flavored variety of classic era progressive metal on their debut album "Rebirth", where the primal sounding guitars tend to dominate a bit in landscapes that otherwise have many fine and refined features. Gliding touch guitar textures and orchestral overlays adds a more sophisticated touch to the arrangements, and for many the inclusion of some expressive symphonic progressive rock interludes will be a charming bonus feature. The mix and production does give the album a bit of a closed in feel that perhaps won't be to everybody's taste, but this is also an aspect of the album that ties in well with the concept explored. A production to seek out by those who tend to enjoy a darker and more ominous breed of classic era progressive metal.German band The Spur explore a kind of somewhat primal flavored variety of classic era progressive metal on their debut album "Rebirth", where the primal sounding guitars tend to dominate a bit in landscapes that otherwise have many fine and refined features. Gliding touch guitar textures and orchestral overlays adds a more sophisticated touch to the arrangements, and for many the inclusion of some expressive symphonic progressive rock interludes will be a charming bonus feature. The mix and production does give the album a bit of a closed in feel that perhaps won't be to everybody's taste, but this is also an aspect of the album that ties in well with the concept explored. A production to seek out by those who tend to enjoy a darker and more ominous breed of classic era progressive metal.

Progmessor: February 2023
The Rating Room


Related Links:

The Spur


[ SHORT REVIEWS | DETAILED REVIEWS - LIST | BANDLISTS ]

ProgressoR / Uzbekistan Progressive Rock Pages