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A Metal-Prog Interlude: VOLA – Gutter Moon

I know and love VOLA, from Denmark, for their earlier and largely unheralded music. When I first heard them in 2009 they were a progressive rock band with a strong flavour of math rock in their compositions.

The new VOLA album, “Inmazes”, features a different line-up and a much more exploratory approach. It’s a beautiful merging of prog and math rock, prog and math metal and djent. I believe this must greatly broaden VOLA’s potential fan base. From my point of view as a metal-prog hybrid, this album will be too good to miss. It should be available now.

Find out more at VOLA’s Facebook page.

“Gutter Moon” is from the new album.

For comparison, “Like The Rainbow” is the first track on the 2009 EP, “Homesick Machinery”. Both songs are deeply satisfying.


Super Massive Black Holes – Calculations of the Ancients

If you think you can get away with listening to Calculations of the Ancients one time and get it, think again.   You’ll need more time to be captivated by the new album from Super Massive Black Holes.  The April 29, 2014 release can be described as experimental and/or math metal as they seamlessly blend death metal, rock, jazz-fusion, and prog into their nine-track album.  It’s a dangerous dose of metal, but is it too much?  All good things in moderation they say.  Super Massive Black Holes, does boast many elements, but the saving grace here is that they make it work…and work well.  Enjoy the stream.  By the way, I dig the album cover.  Simple, but effective.

Album Review: Cyclamen – Ashura


Challenging, heavy, unpredictable and fun. One of my favourite releases this year. 


Release Date: October 13, 2013 on their own label Realising Media

Tracks: 10

Length: 35 minutes

Genre: Not easy to describe. Experimental, prog/math metal, post-rock

Previous releases: Split EP 2009, debut album Senjyu 2010,  Memories, Voices EP 2012

Recommended for fans of:  Challenging, interesting, unpredictable music

Description: On Cyclamen’s Bandcamp page it says: DIY-To-The-Core and I get a sense that those words were written with a feeling of great pride and accomplishment. After hearing the new album and seeing Cyclamen live (and meeting them after the show, such great people!), I understand why. This is a fascinating and very different album, with influences from things and places I can only imagine in my mind.

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Full EP Stream – Despite Exile – Re-Evolve

Bands that fall into the Djent category have been hard for me to get into.  They are complex to say the least; whereas I prefer your fairly standard recipe for Thrash metal.  I guess I am an example of being hard to teach an old dog new tricks…though I try.  I like to keep an open mind and try new things especially when they are presented to me.  Despite Exile is one of those bands I would not have known to look for unless I was told about them which, of course, I was – that’s why I am listening to them now.  They are yet another band on a lengthy list of a rapidly growing metal subgenre – Djent.  With their Deathcore and Progressive elements mixed in, this Italian band has my attention.

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