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Sonus Umbra - Digging for Zeroes CD (album) cover


Sonus Umbra

Crossover Prog

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erik neuteboom
3 stars Sonus Umbra is a Mexican six piece band (with additional guest musicians) that has released their third album late 2005. The running time is at about one hour and this CD contains 20 melodic, tasteful and very varied compositions: an electronic atmosphere with wonderful interplay by acoustic - and electric guitar along pleasant sounding keyboards in Zero, lots of shifting moods (from dreamy with twanging guitars to mid-tempo with a fat guitar riff or sultry with swinging piano) in Invisible World, first propulsive, then mellow and in the end fiery guitar with howling licks in Infestation, prog metal with raw vocals and biting guitar in Aleph and dreamy with piano arpeggio's and ... English horn in Infinity. My highlight is The Great Fall Inwards: first dreamy, then a mid-tempo with fiery guitar and flashy synthesizer flights and a final part featuring a bombastic climate with propulsive drums. If you are up to varied and melodic prog, this album is fine one to checkout.

Report this review (#84087)
Posted Tuesday, July 18, 2006 | Review Permalink
Mellotron Storm
3 stars This is SONUS UMBRA's third studio recording,and like the last one it is a concept album. Their vocalist has left so Lisa from KURGAN'S BANE has gone form a guest on the last album to a full time member. The male vocals are performed by the new drummer Jeff laramee. This album is more dynamic than the last one with more highs, but also more lows. Tough to pick a favourite between the two. There are 20 tracks over the 61 minutes of music but some of them blend into one another.

"Zero" opens with atmosphere as the guitar comes in sounding great. A beat follows then vocals come and go. It blends into "Scream" and kicks into gear. "Sleepwalkers" features a guitar melody and female vocals. It's fuller when it blends into "Children Of Cain". "The Laughter Of The Dead" opens with bass and marching styled drums. Synths then female vocals follow. It's heavier 2 minutes in. "Foreshadows" is filled with some cool samples. "Invisible World" opens with acoustic guitar as vocals join in. Great sound when it kicks in. Contrasts continue. "Serial Grounds" is atmospheric with spoken words. "Infestation" is a big low for me. Don't like this one at all especially the chorus. "Spleen" has a beat with guitar and reserved vocals. It does get fuller.

"Bloodstains In Paradise" opens with female vocals, drums and atmosphere. Guitar 1 1/2 minutes in. The tempo picks up after 3 minutes. It blends into "Meme Puppet Waltz" has lots of drums and acoustic guitar. "Dead Numbers" has female vocals and piano early. Synths, drums and male vocals follow as it blends into "Devil's Promise". "Aleph" has a nice heavy sound as vocals join in. Chunky bass too. "The Great Fall Inwards" has female vocals, acoustic guitar and is quite mellow before it kicks in. "The Music Of The Palms" opens with bass as vocals and acoustic guitar join in. It blends into "From The Ashes". "Pariah" features dual vocals and it gets heavier. "Infinity" opens with piano and builds slightly.

3.5 stars. I really think this band is worth taking a chance on.

Report this review (#251244)
Posted Tuesday, November 17, 2009 | Review Permalink
4 stars What a wonderful album!After a first audition of this trully amazing album,all I can say is that I discovered indeed something exceptional and so well done that I am more than impressed! This album is the third of this so talented band and I must confess that I didn't had for a long time such a musical revelation!It's definitelly intelligent music,intelligent texts and amazingly well performed!Wonderful musicians,great vocal parts and a shadow of RUSH is around and sometimes PINK FLOYD moments with noisy interludes,in the sense thet some water are flowing...coins are making their specific noise and so on!Impressive musicianship and well contured musical ideas on this album!Marvelous piano parts assembled with inspired guitar riffs ,very clever use of synthesizers ,modern keyboards sounds too and 2 beautiful voices- LISA FRANCIS is perfect as always -and the shadow of KURGAN'S BANE is very present and PETE LARAMEE-not only a fabulous drummer but a very likeble vocalist too!DIGGING FOR ZEROS is a strong concept album and has all the ingredients for a very exciting audition,all serious prog rock lovers will be plenty satisfied!The whole album is catchy and full of wonderful musical ideas,rich in it's expression and message ,varied and attractive from the very first to the last note!I repeat,the first word that it cames in my mind to appreciate this album is intellligent!A strong release from the talented musician LUIS NASSER-the true masterimid behind the concept, and we hope it isn't the last one,because this band has a huge potential-absolutelly huge!4.5 STARS without any discussion!
Report this review (#273022)
Posted Friday, March 19, 2010 | Review Permalink

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