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Umphrey's McGee - Mantis CD (album) cover

MANTIS

Umphrey's McGee

 

Crossover Prog

3.68 | 79 ratings

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pociluk
5 stars Chicago's premier progressive rock/jam band Umphrey's McGee has a masterpiece on their hands with their new album Mantis. I've been a fan since Anchor Drops and always felt that the band was so close to making a classic but for whatever reason, just never achieved it. Mantis is the record.

UM is not like other jam bands, one could argue after this record that they aren't a jam band at all but a true progressive rock band. This IS a prog album. Even with all the notes, the harmonies, the extended sections, this album has no filler at all. From the calm opener Mad To Measure to the stopping closer 1348, the album never misses.

But a prog rock band? Yes indeed. The nearly 12 minute title track is a barnburner that has multiple sections and moves through each one with such grace. And talk about hooks! That's what keeps these longer tracks from losing you (as any decent prog rock band can tell you), even with all the great playing...there needs to be a SONG.

The hooks on Cemetery Walk were so good, the band fashioned a reprise of sorts with Cemetery Walk II which reminds me of something Steven Wilson might do. Then there's Spires which has some incredible Beach Boy-esque harmonies at the end. And the guitar solo on Turn & Run is worth the price of the album by itself. AMAZING!

I wasn't expecting this from UM. I certainly was HOPING for it. Mantis is a classic album. It's progressive rock in the new millennium. True progress!

1. Made to Measure 3:12 2. Preamble 0:36 3. Mantis 11:49 4. Cemetery Walk 7:30 5. Cemetery Walk II 2:19 6. Turn & Run 7:25 7. Spires 7:41 8. Prophecy Now 2:47 9. Red Tape 5:43 10. 1348 4:49

pociluk | 5/5 |

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