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Discipline - To Shatter All Accord CD (album) cover




Symphonic Prog

4.21 | 705 ratings

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Prog Reviewer
5 stars Review Nš 203

Discipline is a band from Detroit founded in 1987. The band gained a following amount of fans in the Detroit area, performing unusual original music, heavily influenced by the progressive rock music of the 70's, with a live memorable show for theatrics. Lead singer Matthew Parmenter delivered each song behind a coat of mime's makeup, often a different costume, bringing to our memory the vocalist of Genesis, Peter Gabriel, in the good old times of Genesis.

As many of we know, there are an infinity of groups with influences from the greatest 70's progressive rock bands such as Genesis, Yes, King Crimson, Pink Floyd, Emerson, Lake & Palmer, etc., with more or less success and more or less personality. But, in my humble opinion, this is the first time that a band drinks all the essence of the strange and difficult musical world of Van Der Graaf Generator. But what impresses me most is that they make it with a naturalness, quality and personality that make of this group a unique band, in the last thirty years, in the world of progressive rock.

It was only in 1993 that Discipline released their first studio album 'Push And Profit', and in 1997 they released their second studio album, their great masterpiece, 'Unfolded Like The Staircase'. However, it passed many years until the band has released another studio album. Until then, we only could enjoy some great live documents of the group. So, it was a big surprise for me that the band in 2011 released their third studio album, entitled 'To Shatter All Accord'.

The line up on the album is Matthew Parmenter (vocals, keyboards and descants), Jon Preston Bouda (guitars), Matthew Kennedy (bass) and Paul Dzendzel (skins and percussion).

'To Shatter All Accord' has five tracks. The first track 'Circuitry' isn't properly a true new track released by the band. A raw live version appears on 1997's ProgDay '95 compilation CD on the band's 1995 'Discipline Live' VHS tape. It also appears on their double live compilation 'Live Days' released in 2010. It's a song propelled by a down guitar riff with an organ underneath, some gentle piano and a saxophone work that evoke the sound of Van Der Graaf Generator. This is a song with a real vintage sound that promise to us a fantastic and unique musical journey that can brings to us again the glory days of the 70's progressive rock music. The second track 'When The Walls Are Down' isn't also a truly new track from the band. As happened with the previous track, a live version of the song appears on 1997's ProgDay '95 compilation CD on the band's 1995 'Discipline Live' VHS tape, and it also appears on their double live compilation 'Live Days'. The song has a dreamy saxophone work over a piano before the guitar riff and a tortured vocal work, which might be familiar to the fans of Peter Hammill and of Van Der Graaf Generator. Bouda's guitar work is absolutely incredible. This is a perfect track for King Crimson and Van Der Graaf Generator's fans. The third track 'Dead City' is the first truly new track on the album. It starts with a Bouda's psychedelic guitar style followed by Parmenter's keyboards before the beginning of Parmenter's unmistakable voice, this time with a mix between Gabriel and Hammill's vocal styles. This is really a cool track, very accessible, short and concise, completely different from the rest of the album. Still, this is my less favourite track on the album. The fourth track 'When She Dreams She Dreams In Color' is a very complex track with many jazz elements that reminds me strongly the sound of King Crimson, especially the sound of their fourth studio album 'Islands'. It's a very extensive track with about fourteen minutes long. This is, in reality, a great track with a gorgeous mellotron work perfectly in the same vein of the first two King Crimson's studio albums. It's a heaven for the mellotron fans. It has also a beautiful violin performance evocative of Kansas. Sure it pleases Kansas' fans. The fifth track 'Rogue' is the lengthiest track on the album with twenty-four minutes long. This is definitely the great highlight of the album, a song that any progressive fan should listen. This is one of the best progressive songs I've ever heard. The performance of all band members is outstanding. This is a song that incorporates magnificently and perfectly the musical styles of two of the best and most complex bands of the universe of progressive rock, King Crimson and Van Der Graaf Generator. I love this song that represents a perfect way to close this magnificent album.

Conclusion: 'To Shatter All Accord' is an incredible album which opens with a golden key the return of a great and unique band to our progressive world. This is an album that strengthens the musical influence and fuses perfectly the distinct sound of two of the greatest bands of progressive rock music of all time, King Crimson and Van Der Graaf Generator, without Discipline lose their own and unique identity. And now, the great question. Is it as good as 'Unfolded Like Staircase'? In my humble opinion, I don't think so. Sincerely, I continue to prefer that album. However, it's almost as good. This is simply one of the best albums you can ear in the progressive rock music, in our days. It's an album full of passionate music with a lot of emotion. Discipline was back with a fantastic new album. God bless them.

Prog is my Ferrari. Jem Godfrey (Frost*)

VianaProghead | 5/5 |


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