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Lobate Scarp - Time and Space CD (album) cover

TIME AND SPACE

Lobate Scarp

 

Crossover Prog

4.12 | 38 ratings

From Progarchives.com, the ultimate progressive rock music website

AtomicCrimsonRush
Special Collaborator
Symphonic Team
4 stars I was drawn to this album due to its incredible cover art; a spacey scene beautifully realised in its packaging. I had no idea what the band would sound like but was delighted that they more than met my expectations. It is a debut release for Lobate Scarp and certainly a solid debut by any standards.

It opens with 'Time and Space', a delirious prog fest with impressive Cello played with finesse by Adrienne Woods. It begins calmly and then explodes into an amazing rhythm with some scintillating guitar by Nate Olmos, and he is well accompanied by the rhythm machine of bassist Andy Catt, and Drummer Dustin Prince. Adam Sears' vocals are crystalline and easy on the ears as you can pick up every lyric to immerse yourself into the space opera concept. Sears also handles the keyboards deftly throughout. Hoyt Binder also helps with guitars and Alex Acuna from Weather Report is on percussion. The opening track is a 15 minute progger's dream with enough twists and turns to appease any proghead. It certainly fulfills its quest to encounter space and time and does so with such a refreshing approach. The Cello in particular takes the sound to another level and it has measures of intensity and release, shades of dark and light, offering so much for the listener and at times takes your breath away with its stunning musicianship.

After this dynamic start the album moves into a more calming atmosphere with 'Jacob's Ladder' and then it takes off again with 'Beginning of Us'. The lead break in this track is awesome, with soaring sustain and glorious harmonics, and the keyboards shine beautifully. 'The Contradiction' has a jaunty rhythm with a heavier feel, lots of distortion and an infectious chorus. Sears vocals are more forced and he exudes a great deal of passion in his performance. Mid-way through there is a piano interlude and relaxing melancholy atmosphere, especially as the cello slices some gorgeous motifs. The music is mesmerising and dreamy here and gets even quieter as the violin solos out.

'Save My Soul' is 8:44 in length, opening with a heavy distorted riff, a cool lick by any standards that chops and starts in a prog time sig. The track then locks into a blazing inferno of metal guitars and synth. A bassline takes over then as the vocals begin; "I don't understand myself so how the hell can you." The track has a heavy rock vibe and even a retro feel in places. The pace settles down into a subdued jazzy interlude with soft synths, and piano; a gorgeous sound that really appealed to me after the heavy rock. The contrast is striking and innovative; this is the band at their most inventive and it is delightful prog. It returns to the heavy metal riff to end with the dynamic chorus and ending with the obligatory gong; a fabulous track! Then there is a false ending as the song shifts gears into jazz rock fusion territory with the trumpet sounding as a metal guitar riff crunches. The dissonance is wonderful; a trumpet competing madly with a fret melting guitar till it abruptly halts. This caps off an instant prog classic.

'Moment' moves completely to a relaxing feel, a sporadic drum pounds as soft keys chime and Sears gently sings. We can hear Woods beautiful Cello creating tranquil waterfalls cascading down. Then an electric lead guitar comes crashing through the ambience. The rhythm picks up, and there are swathes of synths generating a wall of sound. Sears sings; "If I could take this moment I'd be with you forever, If I could take this moment I'd do it all again". Then there is a haunting buzzing synth and some angelic violin; some of the most ethereal music on the album.

'The Mirror' is the grand finale and features a 30 piece choir resonating powerfully as a lead guitar delay sound reverberates a gorgeous melody. The Pink Floyd influence is unmistakable. Sears sings over the mournful Cello; "then I know it's true 'cos I've seen it in you, you've become the mirror now." On that note the music strikes into a harder rock rhythm. The choir sing in Latin and create a real grandiose and bombastic vibe, akin to the classic 70s prog era. It is the perfect way to close the album, another highlight even at the end. The album never wears out its welcome either as the songs close off at the right time. The album length is close to an hour so is very easy to sit through on one listen.

"Time and Space" is a great debut album, one of the best debuts I have heard, and exudes a huge amount of passion and depth. The musicianship is wonderful, played with virtuoso precision. The tracks are all unique and stand alone. There is not a dull moment or any filler material; it is all killer and a genuine delight to listen to from start to end. There are some moments that are absolutely brilliant especially in the opening title track, 'Save My Soul' and 'The Mirror'. This album comes highly recommended, delivering a unique experience of space rock opera.

AtomicCrimsonRush | 4/5 |

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