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Frequency Drift - Over CD (album) cover

OVER

Frequency Drift

 

Crossover Prog

3.88 | 214 ratings

From Progarchives.com, the ultimate progressive rock music website

Aldebaran_Well
4 stars I was not familiar with this German band, so I have to count them as one of the most pleasant surprises of 2014, so far. Obviously, I cannot compare this album with the previous four ones yet but having listened to ''Over'' several times, I confidently believe I can comprehend their art well enough. Frequency Drift describe it as ''cinematic prog rock''. While this is not a false description, it can easily misguide you. The songwriting is quite straight and normal to be considered cinematic and prog elements are usually put very discretely. To my ears, this is an atmospheric metal/rock band in the late 90's style, reminding me in several moments of bands like The Gathering and The 3rd and the Mortal. What really makes their music different and absolutely lifts its quality is the amazing, delightful instrumentation. Rock, classical and ethnic instruments, along with digital and electronic sounds are perfectly and harmonically combined, providing many layers of musical enjoyment. From this aspect, every song hides its surprises and there is always something new to hear.

The opening track ''Run'' will perfectly enter you in the world of ''Over''. The violin of the intro softly gives its way to the very rhythmic and melodic basic verse. The female vocals of Isa Fallenbacher are warm and dreamy. Though you may feel like you've heard this kind of voice many times in the past, you won't mind because the melodies are sooo good! (I admit that I imagined Gathering's Anneke singing this and lifting it up to the heavens!) Anyway, the song's structure is great, there is a growing feeling and a beautiful crescendo that leads to a mellow and well balanced prog metal finale. ''Once'' is full of effects and guitar sounds quite similar to post rock aesthetics and when the fabulous solo part comes ? is this the instrument dulcar??- you realize that the band dedicates all its imagination and creativity to the arrangements, aiming to create a colorful musical palette. ''Adrift'' steps in with a darker mood, the almost jazzy drumming is well stretched (brought to mind ''Tears laid in earth'' of 3rd and the Mortal) and by the middle of the song harp and flute take over, leading to a very ethereal direction. The basic guitar part of ''Them'' is very prog-like, strings and samples appear at some time, before the first truly classical moment of the album, the magnificent and dramatic cello/violin theme that ends the song, leaving me thrilled. (I admit, I'm a sucker for string quartet stuff!) ''Sagittarius A'' is a good song, a bit up tempo but too pop for my taste. Pop orientation can be found elsewhere in the album ? no problem with that ? but this also mainstream and I can't relate very much to it, sorry.

On the other hand, the 8 minutes long ''Suspended'' is one of the album's best tracks and contains almost everything: a groovy progressive basic pattern, great chorus, super dynamic changes with fast heavy parts, flute solos, a jamming attitude, excellent! Absolutely a gem. ''Wave'' has a very delicate touch, harp is the protagonist and there is a '70's mood in the synths, a classic prog touch. ''Wander'' with its heavy piano, strings and wavedrum leads to seductive and a bit abstract composition, while ''Driven'' is all about drums! Tribal grooves at the start and the middle, soft electronica sounds and a classical part at the end which, very intelligently transforms the main vocal line into something completely different. ''Release'' is one of my favorites too, being dark and deep. There's a very atmospheric and theatrical spoken word intro ? I believe in Greek ? and at some time the song explodes into an eastern folk sonic journey which I found amazing. The 10 minutes long ''Memory'' is probably the heart of the album, summing up all the elements of Frequency Drift's art. It completely justifies the ''cinematic prog rock'' label, cannot be easily described and can only be conceived as a small odyssey. The album concludes melodically with ''Disappear'' and, yes, it's been quite an experience.

''Over'' demands from the listener to sit back relaxed and peaceful, enjoy the music and the emotions it has to offer. If you do that, you'll be delighted to lose yourself inside a truly very good record, which is masterfully composed and arranged. Frequency Drift offers not any great innovation or technical extremity but real music that is beautiful, creative and deep. If you feel like a good quality music lover who appreciates cleverness and good taste in music, expect a 4 star album. Andreas Hack and co can guarantee you the above, for sure. The only things I could ask for future albums is less duration (not fond of 75 minutes long cd's) and deeper dives into the sea of ethnic sounds. But anyway, thank you guys!

Aldebaran_Well | 4/5 |

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