Despite being fairly late with talking about this release, I still want to write some words about this album from the nice guys of Bolus. And that is due to my opinion that this is a criminally overlooked album that deserves a place in any prog rock collection. The trio of Nick Karch (vocals, guitars, banjo and keyboards), Mat Keselman (drums, percussion, vocals and keyboards) and Daniel Avner (bass and vocals) create a wonderful moody version of progressive rock that borders into several other genres. A touch of metal, a dash of ambient, and an ounce of pop add to the prog rock core.
And that all accumulates into an album that enchants from first listen. Great melodic vocals, often with shining harmonies. Intricate arrangements, that go from whisper soft to metallic hard and back again. Just listen to the track The Study Of Madness and withstand it’s attraction. Mission impossible if you ask me. And more songs, if not all, have that enticing quality about them. Smoke At The Mirror, Spurs, Revise, I love them all. If you need more reference, think Godsticks. Another band that combines head and heart. Essential stuff ladies and gentlemen, so go click and buy!
What do mellotron, acoustic guitars, piano, hammond, flute, progressive metal drumming, rock guitars, harmony vocals, groove, AOR, symphonic rock, fusion and prog rock have in common? Besides the fact I love all that of course… Well, the band Bolus put them to great use on this album! From the opening sequence of Those Who Saved Us my attention is caught. And not only because it reminded me of old Chinawhite track Concert For Chaos (visit the member page if you´d like to compare). Well the comparison ends pretty quick because the songs are completely different animals, but the concept of the intro is very similar. Evolving into an enticing prog rock track with great riffing, my attention is raised high. Next track Outside is a whole different affair with the beautiful melodies, acoustic guitars and mellotron again. I am won over!
And if you are reading this and thinking, okay, isn´t this all too patchy? No it is not. The two man band manages to keep it all together with ease. Well you might disagree if you are stuck with 3 chord pop songs your whole life, but then I think you wouldn´t be reading this at all.
In my book this is a very strong release in the progressive rock domain. Accomplished musicians, entertaining songs, authentic instruments with great character, this deserves a large audience. My only question, who do those lead vocals remind me of?… Exciting CD, buy it!