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Anubis Spire - White Crow CD (album) cover

WHITE CROW

Anubis Spire

 

Crossover Prog

3.04 | 5 ratings

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TCat
Prog Reviewer
3 stars Annubis Spire is a US Crossover Prog band formed in 1998 who has released 8 full length albums since that time. Their 8th studio album "White Crow" was released in March of 2019, and features the current line-up of Bill MacKechnie on vocals and guitars, Michael Leo Brothers on vocals and guitars, Tim Costley on bass and Mick Loher on drums and percussion. The album has 11 tracks, none of which break the 6 minute mark, except for the opening track "Sentimental Prison" which has a nice combination of guitar and synth, but is a fairly straightforward and mid-tempo track that has shades of Floydian influence.

Bill's vocals are in the mid-range and are pleasant enough, but not really emotional either, however, he makes the lyrics quite easy to understand. As the album moves into "Captain I Need a Mission" we pretty much start off with the same sound as the previous track, but before 2 minutes, the entire feel of the track goes to a more upbeat rhythm for the rest of the track. There is still nothing really amazing here though, its all pretty straightforward with some okay solos. Interestingly enough, the next track "Love in the Time of Madness" is an instrumental which moves along quite well, but doesn't really develop into much. "Hindu Kush Newsreel" is a bit heavier with some nice sounding guitar work, even though it is a bit overproduced. This song would have been much better, but there is some spoken word going on throughout it which supposed to be like a news program, but it sounds a bit convoluted and ruins the intensity that is apparent in the background that only really stands out when the spoken word "verses" stop.

"Full Thrust" is sounds like a bad electonica track that tries to be stately but sounds a bit washed out. Nice for variety, but it doesn't sound very believable. "White Crow" goes back to a track where the lyrics are supposed to be important about a cult leader's bad habits. It's another heavy song, but it just seems flat and fake. "The Loneliness (at the Center of the World)" is a nice guitar instrumental, but is pretty standard and nothing stands out at all. "Damn Sick and Tired Blues (for Whiteboy Slim)" is a combination of acoustic and electric guitar with gruff vocals. The track is a combination of blues and rock, but again is a bit unbelievable and a tad silly.

"Sabbadelic" is another guitar rock instrumental that has a Hendrix vibe to it, but doesn't really deliver. "From That Window" is a soft track with tacky spoken word passages that later grows in intensity. "Falling Over Me (Like Stars)" is a nice slower guitar led instrumental, probably the most interesting on the album. Even then, it has all been heard before.

There is nothing wrong with variety on an album, in fact, I am all for it. But to pull it off, you have to be good at it. Variety can exist even when an artist or band has an overall specific sound by incorporating traits from other genres into their own style. But when a band tries to just hit every genre they can trying to sound like other artists besides themselves, it can feel unauthentic, as is the case here. The tracks are decent, but when its all said and done, it is all just mediocre, and nothing stands out. They did hit several genres in this album, but none of it is progressive. As such, it's all pretty standard music, average sounding and it receives an average rating.

TCat | 3/5 |

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