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GEKKO PROJEKT

Crossover Prog • United States


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Gekko Projekt biography
US quartet GEKKO PROJEKT was formd in 2010, and consist of Vance Gloster (keyboards), Peter Matuchniak (guitars), Rick Meadows (bass) and Alan Smith (drums). All four experienced hands with a shared passion for many types of music and with a particular soft spot for progressive rock.

They have one full length album to their name so far - Electric Forest - which was released in the spring of 2012 on US label ProgRock Records.

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3.33 | 12 ratings
Electric Forest
2012

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GEKKO PROJEKT Reviews


Showing last 10 reviews only
 Electric Forest by GEKKO PROJEKT album cover Studio Album, 2012
3.33 | 12 ratings

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Electric Forest
Gekko Projekt Crossover Prog

Review by b_olariu
Prog Reviewer

3 stars American band Gekko Projekt was bord in 2010 and in 2012 they released their debut named Electric forest. The band consistof Vance Gloster (keyboards), Peter Matuchniak (guitars), Rick Meadows (bass) and Alan Smith (drums). Before this band take form all musicians involved here were already quite known in musical field with experince in this field. About this little album, what we have here is heavy prog, well done and and performed, maybe in some parts is lacking originality but in the end is quite a pleasent release. The music is energic with nice, smooth arrangements but aswell some more heavier sections are present, the instrumental tunes are to me the best, the ones with voice are so so and Black hole being the most unintresting track of the album. There are lots of chordal changes, rhythmic tempos, competent guitar chops and the keyboards are present when needed, the perfect example is opening track Particle Dance, one of the most intresting pieces of the album. All in all, a fairly decent towards great album this Electric forest, with enough good moments to be heared by any prog listner out there. Worth it, 3 stars for sure, 3.5 in places. A nice art work and overall digipak.

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 Electric Forest by GEKKO PROJEKT album cover Studio Album, 2012
3.33 | 12 ratings

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Electric Forest
Gekko Projekt Crossover Prog

Review by kev rowland
Special Collaborator Crossover Team

4 stars This is a real hotchpotch of a debut album, and I love it. They ought to release "Black Hole" as a single as it is incredibly infectious and I defy anyone playing this in the car not to be singing along to the chorus by the time it comes around for the second time. Now, singles is not something that one would normally think of with a prog band but one of the joys of this album is that if you don't like the style of the song you are listening to then don't worry as there will be another one along in a minute. There are elements of the instrumental 'Cognitive Dissonance' that wouldn't sound out of place on a Weather Report album while Peter Matuchniak's guitar cuts through like Howe or Hackett but with more force.

This is mostly an instrumental album, and keyboard player Vance Gloster is credited as solo composer on most songs (and a co-write on two others) so it is not surprising that at times it can feel that the keyboards are taking over but there never last for long. Alan Smith has a great understanding of the way that drums can add to a song and at times he is very sparing while at others he is dominating and bassist Rick Meadows isn't exactly a slouch either. There is a lot going on here, and musically it is all over the place with leaps in and out of fusion, jazz and many other styles ? but just think of it as a band pushing the barriers and just get into the groove. And don't forget to singalong to "Black Hole". www.gekkoprojekt.com or www.progrockrecords.com

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 Electric Forest by GEKKO PROJEKT album cover Studio Album, 2012
3.33 | 12 ratings

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Electric Forest
Gekko Projekt Crossover Prog

Review by Conor Fynes
Prog Reviewer

3 stars 'Electric Forest' - Gekko Projeckt (6/10)

Long before the time Gekko Projeckt and their debut "Electric Forest" rolled around, each of the musicians that comprise this quartet were experienced performers, and this maturity translates well into their poppy melange of prog rock. At forty minutes and ten tracks, they have created an album that even the most delicate rock listener could appreciate. Their talent is evident throughout, although this relatively unambitious take on prog leaves me in want for excitement.

The sounds of King Crimson, Rush, and Camel all find a place in Gekko Projekt. Above all, "Electric Forest" may be seen as an instrumental rock guitar album with a smattering of 'vocal' songs. Instrumentally, Gekko Projeckt find a familiar nook for themselves, drawing in the exploratory nature of fusion jazz with the classic style of symphonic prog. "Electric Forest" is then filtered through a sheath of poppy melodies and accessible song structures. For the most part, this works pretty well, thanks in large part to guitarist Peter Matuchniak's elaborate performance. With particular regards to the beautiful instrumental "Cognitive Dissonance", Peter is skilled with melodic lead playing as much as he is with finding the perfect guitar tone for the mood.

Though fairly few in number, Gekko Projekt throw some vocals our way. Of these, "Black Hole" is the most memorable, a warm and catchy track with some vocals I might expect to find in a folk rock album. The voices- performed on the album by Vance Gloster and Alan Smith- are not excellent from a technical perspective, but warmth and feeling is there. Instrumentally, the music is rarely complex, and, with the exception of Peter's guitar work, the musicianship does not really stand out, although I have a feeling that this is more a result of the fairly straightforward song structures rather than the talent of the musicians themselves.

In short, "Electric Forest" is a pretty enjoyable album to listen to; a fine piece of music to put on while relaxing. It delivers the warmth and sound of prog, however exchanging the genre's typically challenging song structures for accessible compositionship. Fans of Camel will enjoy what Gekko Projekt have to offer.

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 Electric Forest by GEKKO PROJEKT album cover Studio Album, 2012
3.33 | 12 ratings

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Electric Forest
Gekko Projekt Crossover Prog

Review by Ivan_Melgar_M
Special Collaborator Symphonic Prog Specialist

4 stars

Some weeks ago my good friend PETER MATUCHNIAK sent me a mail informing me about two new albums and asking for my new address, I was a bit distracted and said "OK I will check them", thinking he would send me two new releases of EVOLVE IV (a Prog Related band that didn't impressed me too much), but to my surprise when the postman left the albums I found that one of them was from a new band called GEKKO PROJECT, so I placed the album Electric Forest in the cd player and was positively surprised. With a formation that includes no EVOLVE IV member except Peter himself, the sound is completely different, with much more strength and excellent organ passages, combining melodic Prog with very pompous and string tracks.

The album starts with Particle Dance and it's excellent guitar intro by Matuchniak, as the song goes on, the keyboards by Vance Gloster take the lead with lush keyboards reminiscent of Clive Nolan, always supported by the guitar and rhythm section. A really good opener that keeps the listener at the edge of the seat.

Black Hole is more a Blues Rock track with some BEATLES influence and a bit of funk, very pleasant but also with a clearly Psyche oriented organ and heavy guitar, not too fond on the vocals but a good change after the pompous opener and before Cognitive Dissonance, in which the previous styles morphs into some sort of Psyche oriented Fusion with and outstanding bass work by Rick Meadows.

In London Vibe the band goes deeper into Fusion territory with an impressive guitar and great drums performance by Alan Smith. At this point of the album GEKKO PROJECT has captivated me because of their versatility and radical changes, all worked with good taste and skills.

Avatar Jones begins as a soft ballad, but around the first minute this changes dramatically when the keyboards take the lead along with some nice vocals, after this point you can expect anything, from YES influenced passages to dramatic and mysterious segments, lots of Psychedelic organ and even some ASIA reminiscent moments, in other words, the dramatic changes a Prog fan expects to listen.

Erdinger is a strange song because despite being powerful and dramatic reminds me of CAMEL specially Moonmadness with a hint of PINK FLOYD, as if it was planned to introduce the listener to the trippy Martian Sunrise, a captivating musical piece.

The album continues with State of Siege, another powerful track with excellent guitar and keys interplay, more oriented towards Rock than to Prog, something that won't bother the Progressive Rock listener because of the exceptional quality of the music, but still the best is yet to come, since October Skies has just everything I can expect from a new band, and that's originality, pay special attention to the brilliant bass sections and the superb drumming in the PINK FLOYD evocative closing section.

The album ends with the short but interesting Particle Dance (Coda) the perfect closer for a very strong album that deserves no less than 4 solid stars, because rarely a new band is so solid and at the same time versatile. I hope that Peter doesn't give priority to his other projects, because this new band has a lot to offer.

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 Electric Forest by GEKKO PROJEKT album cover Studio Album, 2012
3.33 | 12 ratings

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Electric Forest
Gekko Projekt Crossover Prog

Review by Evolver
Special Collaborator Crossover & JazzRock/Fusion Teams

3 stars Gekko Projekt, a band from Southern California, on this, their first album, plays a tasty set of melodic rock/jazz fusion (leaning mostly toward the rock side), with an ample helping of prog sensibilities.

The songs, mostly intrumentals, remind me a bit of Eric Johnson's smooth style, although with more rhythm and chordal changes. The musicianship is competant, although the serious fusion fan will not be blown away by the performances. I do appreciate the well thought out tones used by Peter Matuchniak's guitars and Vance Gloster's keyboards.

the only song that feels out of place is one of the few vocal tunes, Black Hole. This is a straight ahead rocker, with vocals reminiscent of Vincent Fournier (Alice Cooper), in his earlier days.

Otherwise, this is a cool album for playing in your car on a warm day with the windows down.

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 Electric Forest by GEKKO PROJEKT album cover Studio Album, 2012
3.33 | 12 ratings

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Electric Forest
Gekko Projekt Crossover Prog

Review by Windhawk
Special Collaborator Honorary Collaborator

3 stars US based quartet GEKKO PROJEKT is a recent formation sporting members that all bring with them skills developed through several decades as active musicians in various bands and styles, but all of them with a special passion for progressive rock. "Electric Forest" is their debut album, and was released by Progrock Records in 2012.

If you have a fairly liberal taste in music, enjoy compositions of an accessible nature and like bands like Allman Brothers just as much as Camel and Pendragon, Gekko Projekt's "Electric Forest" should come across as a fairly interesting production ? how interesting a matter of taste, as performance and production are of good quality. A promising debut album by an experienced quartet.

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Thanks to windhawk for the artist addition.

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