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OSI - Free CD (album) cover




Experimental/Post Metal

3.39 | 198 ratings

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4 stars Few will argue that Kevin Moore's involvement on OSI's second album is much larger then Jim Mateos's contributions. But an equally low amount of fans will agree whether that was a good or a bad thing. With Mateos guitars taking the backseat, the vocals come more to the fore. That's where a lot of the discord stems from. Not everybody appreciates different Kevin Moore's discreet vocals. Some find him flat, limited, tedious and soulless. Others love his sensitive and understated delivery.

Being quite the admirer of Kevin Moore and Chroma Key, I have always deeply loved this OSI album. Even if it's not entirely consistent and doesn't live up to the promise set by the opening songs, it's a very strong album that is filled to the brim with sophisticated rock music and sonic explorations. The first two songs are absolutely brilliant trip-rockers, appealing for their metallic edge, catchy grooves and clever arrangements.

Also the next batch of songs is solid. Jim Mateos only contributes to All Gone Now, so don't expect much metal here. Instead Moore sings on atmospheric rock songs that should appeal to fans of Anathema, Porcupine Tree and Chroma Key. The flash of inspiration ends with Kicking, one of my favourites on this album.

What follows is slightly below the excellence of the first 7 tracks. Or maybe it's just the continuous gloomy mood of the album that makes it slightly dragging. Better brings the guitars back and is still a decent strongest tune, but Once is a bit dreary in the melodic department. Just like the previous OSI, this album ends with a long progressive space-rock techno piece followed by a short acoustic tune. The ambient techno prog of Once is fine, but somehow it disappoints, maybe the album needed a more powerful statement to raise the mood here. It sounds a bit flat. The charming acoustic tune Our Town is a real winner. Pink Floyd couldn't have done it better.

Overall, a wonderful OSI album. Just don't expect or judge this as a metal album.

Bonnek | 4/5 |


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