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Frost* - Milliontown CD (album) cover





3.83 | 447 ratings

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4 stars I guess it's about time I review what I considered to be one of the best releases of 2006 (Right behind The Flower Kings' Paradox Hotel). Formed by the bands nucleus, Jem Godfrey, he surrounded himself with some of the best musicians in neo prog: John Mitchell of Arena and Kino, Andy Edwards of IQ, and John Jowitt of IQ, Arena, and Blind Ego. This makes for some of the most dynamic music in progressive muisc, in my opinion.

The disc begins with the almighty instrumental "Hyperventilate", kicked off by a beautiful piano section. Andy Edwards especially showcases what a versatile and accomplished drummer he is on this song. The band as a whole shines with musicianship that rivals old Yes (that's right...old Yes). Godfrey's synths remind me of Kevin Moore of Dream Theater towards the end, but the variety of influences are quite evident. Probably one of the best instrumentals I've heard in quite a while.

Where the intial track is undeniably prog, "No Me, No You" takes on a punkish bravado in the beginning with it's driving beat. Still embodies progressive characteristics, but see saws back and forth. This song is also the first we get to hear the vocalists for Frost*. Godfrey's got a decent voice and has a bit of a grittiness to it.

"Snowman" is when we get to hear Mitchell on vocals for the first time. As apparent on Kino's Picture, Mitchell is a very good vocalist. Maybe not possessing the best range, but still very listenable. The song begins with a down troddened pattern with a synth adding a bit of window dressing alongside the vocals and piano. A nice tune that sounds a bit like 10CC, but far from the strongest. Could use a bit more variation.

"The Other Me" begins with a grunge-like guitar riff that would sound comfortable on a Pearl Jam disc alongside a drum loop until the band bears down for a tone straight from society's underbelly. Again, with Godfrey on vocals, this is a very rocking song with a NIN persona. A song that really has a bit of a nasty bite to it...and I like it a lot.

Wedged in between the title track and "Hyperventilate" as my favorite track, we are presented with "Black Light Machine". With characteristics of IQ, Arena, and Pink Floyd, this is a very strong tune with excellent guitar work by Mitchell about 3 minutes in.

We close with the amazing 25 minute epic entitled "Milliontown". Could be one of the coolest epics I've heard and really ensures us that prog is well and alive as the young guns carry the torch high and proud. A pretty meek beginning gives away to an explosion about 2 1/2 minutes in followed by a wicked synth solo. This song is balls to the wall prog in all of it's glory. DPRP's poll from last year had this as being the best song of 2006 and neo prog doubters should give it a listen. Not the least bit tiresome with energy throughout.

I'm hoping Frost endures. We were hit with the news that they had disbanded, but Godfrey announced that Darwin's Radio singer/guitarist was going to carry on in the place of Mitchell. Might be interesting, but regardless, it would be hard to top this debut.

E-Dub | 4/5 |


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