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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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JTP88
3 stars This 2009 album showed me something I had never heard before, although I'm not that surprised and it's not by any means innovator, it was with surprise that I noticed that this album, full of long instrumentals, complex song structures, a lot of jazz and undoubtedly fantastic musicianship, has vocal melodies so pop-ish that would fit into a Robbie Williams album.

The opener "Made To Measure", is a really pretty song, piano driven, with great passages, very well constructed progressions and, of course, really pop vocal melody. "Mantis" is almost 12 minute long, and kicks in really powerful, almost in a metal riff with fantastic piano breaks, it is musically fantastic, but then the voice comes in, in a rock-hymn tone, almost pop-punk, what makes it really hard to enjoy.

"Cemetery Walk" is easily the best one here, a really slow dark beginning progresses to a fantastic groove, absolutely addicting, this song has no less pop melodies than the others, but these are so groovy that it is impossible not to like.

From this moment on, the album tends to repeat a little, there aren't more really memorable moments, although they are all very catchy and well constructed, the vocal melodies are really my problem here. Fantastic song-writing, great musicianship as well as great production, but the vocal melodies ruin this album for me, for they are so easy and obvious.

JTP88 | 3/5 |

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