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Progarchives, the progressive rock ultimate discography
Animals As Leaders - Animals As Leaders CD (album) cover


Animals As Leaders


Tech/Extreme Prog Metal

4.01 | 262 ratings

From, the ultimate progressive rock music website

5 stars This album is the reason I check out progarchives every day.

I have been a passionate Steve Vai fan for as long as I can remember. When you put a guitar in his hands its no longer the same instrument as it would be in someone else's. The music he makes is in a different language, you can't really compare/translate it into someone else's musical language because the conjugations, phrasing and tenses are too incompatible. He approaches it in an entirely different way.

When I heard AAL for the first time, I was hearing the same alien aspect and it stirred the same response from me. This music is on a different level. Not just the guitar work of Abasi but the music as a whole. It incorporates the best aspects of several genres and manifests them into a new conglomerate that is unquestionably successful. They fearlessly attack an objective as ambitious as that and come through virtually unscathed. With that said, the music comes through as very impulsive (check Abasi's interviews on how he writes), and that always carries its own strengths and weaknesses. The repetition in themes and feeling is a valid critique and we can all just hope that one day we will look back on this album as the foothill at the base of a mountain.

Tosin Abasi is no Steve Vai, but his level of virtuosity, innovation and technical prodigiousness is on par. Vai plays with his heart where as Tosin plays more with his brain, but AAL does manage to convey real emotion, though mostly with melodic, harmonic and tonal tools. I can't wait for Tosin's own 'Passion and Warfare', if you will. The impact of jazz influence on new metal seems to be building traction. We are hearing it in the drummers, the guitarists and the composition. I think AAL really demonstrates the potential of where we can go from here.

Highights are 'Song of Solomon', 'Inamorata' and 'Tempting Time'.

In conclusion, this is paradigm shifting modern prog.

Gyges | 5/5 |


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