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Chance:Risiko - Sleep Talking CD (album) cover




Crossover Prog

3.04 | 5 ratings

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3 stars Italian label AltrOck have so far released wonderful avant-rock/avant-garde and related albums (Yugen, Rational Diet, Finnegans Wake, Simon Steensland, miRthkon, Kurai, Accordo Dei Contrari etc.). With this release, Sleep Talking, they present a band, Chance:Risiko, that is quite different from those signed so far to the label.

At first listen, one may think he has figured this band out; being able to point out their influences and pigeonhole their style. But that would be only a partial picture of what stand behind their music. Yes, the vocalist's voice reminds of Thom Yorke, and yes, there are some Radiohead characteristics here: a certain subtleness and abstractness that permeates throughout the entire album as well as a sense of mystery and magic, a place where time seems to move slower.

But that is not all.

In fact, this amorphic nature, combined with sudden gushes of precise and determined guitar playing, brings forth another layer and approach. One may be reminded of Time Of Orchid's music, with its complexity, density and heaviness of mood. The way some songs are connected creates a sense of ongoing journey; a cohesion that achieves a far greater impact had these songs not been somewhat alike in sound (most of them at least) and fused together at their "joints". This connectivity is not always in the "physical" sense of non-stop music, but also in spirit, as if the following song continues from the emotional ground its previous one reached and builds on from there. The way the core of the music flows, medium paced, mostly calm, but prone to abrupt surges of intensity and emotion, serves as a plateau for the listener to lean on and be carried away with. Then come the different toppings of each particular song, its melody, specific intricacies, sounds, instrumentation, manipulations. There is delicacy in some songs (Monday Morning Motivation), and there is more punch in others (Oompa Loompa, which is also a different side of the band and quite different than the rest of the album in its heaviness, loudness and aggressiveness).

This is one of those albums that take you somewhere else (if you let it and you devote yourself to it while listening). While some may find it derivative from other bands mentioned above, I find that they have created something unique enough to not only satisfy my musical "taste buds" but also to want to come back to this album for more. It took me some repeated listening to be able to "crack" open the door to fully enjoy this album. It requires your full attention. Then you'll be able to know if this is for you or not. In my case, I know it's for me.

avestin | 3/5 |


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