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Motion Theory - It's not as dark as that, Friend CD (album) cover

IT'S NOT AS DARK AS THAT, FRIEND

Motion Theory

 

Crossover Prog

3.14 | 4 ratings

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Conor Fynes
Prog Reviewer
4 stars 'It's Not As Dark As That, Friend' - Motion Theory (7/10)

Motion Theory is a band from the UK that labels their sound as 'alternative prog rock'. By that, one can assume that they are a group that aims to advance the more modern brands of rock music, rather than looking to the past, and this is something that instantly attracts me to the music of this band. Despite the relative youth of the band members, this band have already come out with a full-length debut in 'Featherhead' and a handful of shorter releases. 'It's Not As Dark As That, Friend' is the most recent outing from this group, and although Motion Theory may not have been around for so long, their skill and promise as an act shows. Although EPs usually give me a sense of sounding incomplete, I have found myself really enjoying what the band has done here. I look forward to hearing more from the band in the future.

The closest thing I would compare Motion Theory to is the American band Dredg, who similarly is rotted mainly in alternative rock, but makes use of more atmosphere and depth than you might expect from a typical rock group. Even singer Dom Main sounds very much alike the vocalist from Dredg, and I do not think this is a bad thing; Motion Theory have enough of their own charm to resist being called a soundalike. The first two songs are very much based in post-rock tinged atmosphere, with Dom's vocals brooding overtop, and one of the first things I notice with the music here is how well it is produced. Although the album does not have the consistent quality that I would expect from a more professional release, the atmosphere is really captured here, especially later on during the solemn closer 'Forgotten Girl'. Motion Theory are still unsigned, but they can produce their music quite well. The only major downshift from this sense of great recording is during the third song, which is recorded with 'live' instruments, so it is understandable why it would not be up to par with the rest, although for all intents and purposes, it still sounds fairly good. The only harm it causes is breaking the album's flow.

The songwriting here is maybe where Motion Theory shows the most promise. I would not say that any of the album's five tracks blow me away, but they leave me wanting more. There's a fair variety here, from the bass-driven rock in 'Sure It's Chaos But It's Ours' to bright post rock in the opener, and a nearly ambient finale. In total, Motion Theory has introduced themselves to me in a memorable, enjoyable, and promising fashion. 'It's Not As Dark As That, Friend' has some bumpy edges, but there's nothing here that I could really complain about. I look forward to hearing the band sharpen up their skills and continue their work, because this is very good.

Conor Fynes | 4/5 |

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