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Spock's Beard - Octane CD (album) cover


Spock's Beard


Symphonic Prog

3.13 | 394 ratings

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King of Loss
Prog Reviewer
3 stars This is Spock's Beard's 8th studio album and 2nd one without co-founder and main songwriter Neal Morse. The remaining members of Dave Meros, Alan Morse, Ryo Okumoto and Nick D'Virgilio do all the songwriting and here is the result we get, Octane. Octane starts off with a bang, trumpets, a semi-full orchestra and blaring guitars and drums. All slams you until Nick DV starts singing, a significant difference is shown from the last album, Feel Euphoria and the times of Neal Morse. Spock's Beard is now playing with a much heavier tone and hard-driven guitar is used on songs such as Surfing down the Avalanche, which I believe is the heaviest song they've ever made with fast-pace drumming, fast-pace bass, crunching guitars and howling vocals by Nick D'Virgilio rather surprisingly good voice. In Octane, Dave Meros's (Bass) writing talents were clearly shown. His bass lines and crafting of music is much better than it was ever before. Octane also showcases brilliant singing by Nick D'Virgilio, the drummer and the current singer of Spock's Beard. His voice is quite soothing and brilliant-sounding and has increasingly improved since his performance on Feel Euphoria. The symphonic arrangements done by John Boegehold implicates an interesting and moody atmosphere on Octane. Overall, I must say, Octane is a good release, but is not the best Spock's Beard release. It, however, surely was better than Feel Euphoria and surpassed my quite low expectations of this album. A rating of about 3 1/4 stars, rounded down to 3 stars is fitting for the change in tone. Surely, sometimes it was poppy and sometimes Progressive Metal-like, but it shows how a band can change their sound dramatically and not decline massively. Sure, Spock's Beard would be better off with Neal Morse, but Octane shows that the band would be not be just a push-over and will continue to be quite impressive.
King of Loss | 3/5 |


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