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Arabs In Aspic

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Arabs In Aspic Progeria album cover
3.36 | 20 ratings | 2 reviews | 35% 5 stars

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Singles/EPs/Fan Club/Promo, released in 2003

Songs / Tracks Listing

1. Progeria (1:47)
2. Silver Storm (8:01)
3. Shelob's Cave/The Great Shelob/Wizard in White(7:38)
4. Megalodon (9:51)

Total Time: 27:02

Line-up / Musicians

- Jostein Smeby / guitars, vocals
- Eskil Nyhus / drums
- Terje Nyhus / bass
- Tommy Ingebrigtsen / guitars

- Rune Stavnesli / organ
- Kurt Sprenger / radiovoices
- Snorre A. Hovdal / radiovoices

Releases information

CD Borse Music CD03 (2003)

Recorded, mixed & mastered at Godt Selskap in April 2003.

Thanks to psarros for the addition
and to The Bearded Bard for the last updates
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ARABS IN ASPIC Progeria ratings distribution

(20 ratings)
Essential: a masterpiece of progressive rock music(35%)
Excellent addition to any prog rock music collection(35%)
Good, but non-essential (30%)
Collectors/fans only (0%)
Poor. Only for completionists (0%)

ARABS IN ASPIC Progeria reviews

Showing all collaborators reviews and last reviews preview | Show all reviews/ratings

Collaborators/Experts Reviews

Review by apps79
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator
3 stars The love for Black Sabbath united two musicians in Trondheim, Norway back in 1997.Guitarists Jostein Smeby and Tommy Ingebrigtsen shared a common passion for the legendary Doom/Heavy Rock act and decided to put it on a cover band, setting the seeds of what would became Arabs In Aspic.Despite changing name after name (Plastic Fingers, Electric Snowjogs, Pilot) they had a solid rhythm section with Eskil Nyhus on drums and his brother Terje Nyhus on bass.A two-year hiatus would follow when Smeby moved to Lillehammer to become a professional ski-jumper (!), eventually he returned to Trondheim and Arabs In Aspic were officially born in 2002, followed by an EP the next year under the title ''Progeria''.

After a short atmospheric guitar-driven intro with distorted vocals, the band will get in full work with the 8-min. ''Silver storm'', a powerful Retro-styled heavy rocker with some psychedelic guitar playing and tremendous work on organ by the session musician Rune.There are also some background effects and a light jazzy edge on the guitar solos, making the track quite unique.''Shelob's Cave/The Great Shelob/Wizard In White'' follows and this has definitely a doomy atmosphere.Low-tempo rocker with a rather overstretched guitar-based opening before the vocals and heavy guitars enter the scene to make it a bombastic Stoner-Rock piece of music.Organs are again present but less dominant but what really surprises is the powerful rhythm section.Solid drumming and deep bass grooves all the way.The closing 10-min. ''Megalodon'' is more of the same.A psychedelic guitar/vocal-led opening section will lead to the bursting of the electric guitars and organs and this time the sound is really close to early-70's BLACK SABBATH, pure Doom Rock/Proto-Heavy Metal with some good guitar solos and dynamic organ passages, quite interesting but a bit too long and pretentious.

Lacking a bit the impressive songwriting of other bands of this Retro/Heavy Progressive Rock style like BLACK BONZO, Arabs In Aspic step into discography with the correct foot.Dynamic performance, rich sound but also lack of personality result to an album far from highly essential but still warmly recommended.

Review by Aussie-Byrd-Brother
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Rock Progressivo Italiano Team
3 stars The debut release from Arabs in Aspic is a fine mix of doomy heavy stoner psych that owes a great deal to Black Sabbath, the brimstone-fired Hammond drenched hard proto-prog/occult tinged danger of bands like Atomic Rooster, Bodkin and Bram Stoker, with some nice nods to Pink Floyd too. Full of plodding dirty grooves and sludgy riffs, it's a great start from this Norwegian band, even though they'd later head in a more vintage 70's psych/rock direction with greater focus of pleasing vocal melodies and more concise arrangements.

After a psychedelic and comical introduction, the eight minute `Silver Storm' kicks in, a slow-paced melancholic and spacey rocker. Opening with eerie faraway humming organ over gloomy rain ambience, it quickly moves through a sombre vocal, heavy snarling murky guitars with wild soloing, an intimidating and primal drum-build in the middle with a monstrous stoner rock finale over swirling effects. Rune Stavnesli's searing Hammond organ work dominates this piece, thoughtful and atmospheric one moment, then intense and brimming with hellfire the next.

`Shelob's Cave/Wizard in White' is a slow-burner, a lesson in wonderfully executed doomy tension. A killer rhythm section with plodding bass and perfectly-timed drumming, with shimmering serrated guitars and some very commanding Black Sabbath-styled vocals. This time the organ hums solemnly in the background under some mud-thick guitars with a siren-like urgency and a frantic heavy madness throughout the second half.

"Stranded in a desert of ice, pray for starlight from above" - The almost ten minute closer `Megalodon' is a dark fantasy rocker book-ended with mellow Pink Floyd-styled warm organ amongst the brooding heaviness. Strangely three minutes in, the track diverts into a heavy interpretation of the final section of Caravan's `Nine Feet Underground'! Not so much lazy as a cheeky and risky nod to the beloved Canterbury band that shows the sense of humour that's present in all the releases from the band, it's a nice respite before the piece turns to a ferocious monolithic slab of hard guitar noise and wailing soloing that pans left and right to disorientate the listener and some dirty stop/start grooves. Sadly, after a repeat of the chorus the track just stops, no big finale, which is something of a missed opportunity.

Running a brisk 27 minutes, `Progeria' is more of a glimpse of what the Arabs in Aspic band would eventually be able to deliver, their best work still ahead of them. Although melodically a far cry from their more recent albums such as `Strange Frame of Mind' and `Pictures In A Dream' (where they really nailed some catchy melodies and winning vocal harmonies), `Progeria' is a cool stormy rock album that fans of heavy organ-drenched rock and any of the above mentioned bands should enjoy. Who knows, some fans may prefer this version of the band to the more streamlined and approachable retro-rock direction they're currently in?

The best way to hear the album now is on the lavish double LP set from 2011 with the proper full-length follow-up `Far Out in Aradabia'. Housed in a gorgeous psychedelic erotic blowout cover, there's more incentive than ever to get it, so why not give this great band a go?

Three stars.

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