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Montresor - Daybreak CD (album) cover




Heavy Prog

3.03 | 6 ratings

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Special Collaborator
Rock Progressivo Italiano Team
3 stars I was initially a little worried about purchasing this album from Melbourne based Australian instrumental progressive rock band Montresor. I'm more than happy to support a prog band from my home town, but they have some Post Rock elements in their music, and that's usually a genre I'm frequently underwhelmed by. Too often the Post bands I've given time to fall into the `soft-loud-soft-loud' cliched trap that I find tediously dull. However, here we have a band that merges progressive rock prowess with the more restrained and subtle elements of Post Rock, as well as harder guitars without ever actually being truly heavy metal. Think `Red' era King Crimson with the earlier aggressive Anekdoten albums, as well as Gosta Berlings Saga and just a hint of Opeth.

The opening brief title track and `Helios/Flight To The Moon' set a template for much of the album - long droning pieces that alternate between heavier passages, melodic diversions and moody ambience. Lots of walls of feedback swirling around chugging bass, technical varied drumming and chiming guitar melodies. It's full of progressive rock skill without every resorting to inane soloing and showing off, rather the talented band utilize their skills to create a careful soundtrack of brooding drama and emotional reflection.

There's a number of wonderful highlights on the album. `Medusa' has a sinister creeping bass line, unnerving repetitive guitar and schizophrenic heavy attacks. There's plenty of moody drum-work among the stalking drama, with a frantic and impossibly heavy predatory finale.

`Longing' is a subtle and emotional instrumental ballad with a sad melody eventually backed by equally gentle and harsh reverb and delay feedback.

It's not all gloom and melancholy, though! Tracks like `Bertran Russell' have a ragged jamming quality to the guitar sound, with bouncy rollicking bass that gives the piece a surprisingly upbeat sound! The second half of `...To The Cosmos' has some wonderful inventive virtuoso drum-work that wouldn't have sounded out-of-place on the early 70's Eloy albums.

The psychedelic `Samuel Beckett' closes the album in a mysterious drifting manner thanks to some tight playing by the band. Lovely fluid and melodic bass floats along in the background while gentle dreamy guitar chords and commanding drumming weave through the piece.

`Daybreak' is a highly promising first album that shows a band with so much potential, full of possibilities, ideas and the musical talent to make even more accomplished albums in the future. Everything is in the right place, and the band will surely only keep pushing themselves to create more varied and complex pieces from here on. If you were to throw the few dollars the CD costs to the band, you'll be rewarded with a very decent debut album that improves greatly on repeated listens. It's already become an easy choice for me to pull from the shelf and enjoy as an undemanding listen, full of terrific playing and clever arrangements without being faceless background music.

Onwards and upwards for a talented Australian progressive instrumental band!

Three stars....edging closer to three and a half.

Aussie-Byrd-Brother | 3/5 |


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