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Driveby - Progressive Decay CD (album) cover

PROGRESSIVE DECAY

Driveby

 

Heavy Prog

3.00 | 1 ratings

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siLLy puPPy
3 stars One of the more modern obscurities, DRIVEBY comes from the Tirol region of Austria in the city of Kramasch and features the quartet of Andreas (drums), Christian (bass), Philipp (guitar, glockenspiel) and Johannes (guitar, piano). Together these guys have crafted a unique sounding blend of heavy alternative rock, neo-prog and ska with a touch of bizarre experimentalism although the motto of the band is to keep the technicalities from stealing the show and let the songwriting, melodic hooks and band performances stay in the forefront.

This band has released a handful of albums and it all began with this 2007 debut PROGRESSING DECAY. This is an indie band through and through and you can only find this album digitally such as on Spotify or CD-R. Some consider this a retro prog band of sort as the guitar tones and oddball jangle chords do remind a bit of Robert Fripp and King Crimson but musically speaking this band focuses most on heavily distorted alternative rock motifs which alternate with moments of clean guitar sequences which at times even play together in unorthodox ways.

This album of only six tracks reaches the 46 minute mark with all exceeding the six minute mark and three racing past the eight however despite the lengthy running times, the band still manages to sound more like al alt rock band rather than a prog one however tracks like "Acceptends" and its lengthy 9-minute run displays a gloomy atmosphere while an almost post-rock like cyclical loop procession sallies forth into a lengthy journey with different guitar riffs punctuating a mostly sedate groove with lazy drumming that merely accompanies but when least expected outbreaks of heavier rock bombast erupt from the dormancy of the dispassionate display of mopey vocals and Mogwai-esque guitar tones.

DRIVEBY presents an interesting contrast here but ultimately it's not as satisfying as i had hoped. This album is a bit amateurish although the production is excellent. There are awkward moments of death metal growls that drop in along with some interesting contrasts of dynamics but ultimately the compositions themselves are really just standard alternative rock with a few tidbits thrown in as well as lengthening the playtime. While the music is interesting, it's really the rather ho hum vocals that leave me cold. Dude just can't sing beyond a monotone and is barely singing at all. His voice would be perfect some shoegaze band where the emphasis is on the haze of sound rather than the vocals but here he sounds weak.

One thing i can say and that is that DRIVEBY present an original slice of pseudo-prog here with PROGRESSING DECAY. The way they have stitched various styles of music together is quite unique and this is indeed not a bad album to explore for that reason but it's also not something that is compelling enough to solicit return visits at least not for my crowded musical schedule. Perhaps some of the later albums have matured a bit but unfortunately this one doesn't really beg me to explore further so i guess i'll have to wait to hear from others if they truly are better but so far it seems that this band will remain an obscurity in the sea of new music that has flooded the market in the 21st century.

siLLy puPPy | 3/5 |

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