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Djam Karet - Burning The Hard City CD (album) cover

BURNING THE HARD CITY

Djam Karet

 

Eclectic Prog

3.68 | 47 ratings

From Progarchives.com, the ultimate progressive rock music website

aapatsos
Special Collaborator
Prog Metal and Heavy Prog Teams
3 stars First experience with DJAM KARET and quite an interesting one: a versatile, complex album from the American eclectic-proggers that creates mixed feelings. This is the 6th (!!!) release from this relatively unknown band, whose name means "Elastic Time, The Hour That Stretches".

This feeling of time elasticity is apparent in this album (no matter how you would translate the meaning of elastic time...). Long, complex compositions with changes between highly technical eclectic prog passages and relaxed, mellow tunes (in the vein of Pink Floyd) are the dominant element of ''Burning the Hard City''. Especially the two first tracks are very much guitar-oriented with intensively heavy riffs (almost heavy fusion) and complex bass work in the vein of King Crimson, which appears to be the main influence of the band.

The approach, while still prog, shifts towards a more 'dreamy', psychedelic/space sound in Feast of Ashes and Grooming the Psychosis, with the former being heavily influenced by Pink Floyd bass lines, comprising of some very beautiful melodic passages and the latter flowing in the world of Ozric Tentacles, rising in complexity as the track evolves. A relaxing rhythm section is the main feature of Topanga Safari where the a la King Crimson bass work appears again.

Ten Days to the Sand is based on a slightly-distorted guitar background with numerous guitar solos on top of it that reminded me of Hidria Spadefolk's works that date back to clear Ozric Tentacles methodologies. The title track that concludes the album follows the same pattern for its first half while from that point onwards turns (yet again) into a guitar-oriented complex prog piece with interesting fusion elements here and there.

The album definitely has its moments of brilliance which, I have to admit, are several. The virtuosity and the complexity of the music are among the positive aspects even if sometimes the band seems to be exaggerating (see At the Mountains of Madness). Also, the compositions could have been more concise and not stretch for so long, as I find myself getting bored at some (limited) instances.

The fairest rating would be 3.5 stars as I don't consider this to be essential for prog fans. However, I would highly recommend it to fans of King Crimson and Ozric Tentacles. This album represents a strange but successful mixture from the genres of psychedelic and eclectic with a touch of heavy fusion.

aapatsos | 3/5 |

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