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Versus X - Disturbance CD (album) cover


Versus X


Crossover Prog

3.43 | 44 ratings

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Cesar Inca
Special Collaborator
Honorary Collaborator
4 stars I regard Versus X as one of the most interesting new symphonic bands nowadays, and perhaps I feel this way because I really love the refurbishment of the typical vintage symphonic prog with a hard rocking twist (which is the same reason why I enjoy Cliffhanger, Discipline, A Piedi Nudi and Daghmar so much). Yet, this band keeps itself well apart from the realms of prog metal: the guitar riffs and solos do not take center stage too often, nor do they state the main basis for the tracks - the latter is a responsibility left to the keyboardist's control (mostly on his piano chord progressions), and the former is no man's land, since Versus X seems to be primarily preoccupied with the subtle development of ambiences and textures than with the delivery of clear melodies and pompous orchestrations. "Disturbance" was my first versus X experience, and from the few posterior experiences I've had regarding their music, I can tell that this album is very typical of them. Of course, they are not alien to prog pomposity, as the length of all three tracks of the album does undoubtedly show - the musical ideas are expanded, augmented and articulated in an ambitious manner, but this band's ideology is more focused on basic harmonies than on epic melodies. Some may get disappointed at this, and therefore, suspect that these guys simply suffer from lack of writing skills; the way I see it, the band's talent for creating tension is a major asset, which is why I find "Disturbance" so enjoyable. The sound of versus X is basically a re- elaboration of vintage symph prog (Yes, Genesis) with a slightly increased accent on the rocky side of things and occasional hints to dissonance and tension (which relate them to VDGG on a superficial level): the guitar solos are mostly Hackett-inspired, while the keyboard parts are something like a down-to-earth Wakeman-meets-Orford. The opener, paradoxically titled 'Curtain Call', is an excellent showcase for well-articulated cohesion of diverse musical ideas: the sense of energy stays pretty even all throughout the varying moods and transitions between motifs. 'In Silent Age' goes to more somber places, adding more drama to the fold, although it fails to come up as cohesive as the preceding track. The third and final suite takes the best of both aforementioned tracks: the 22 minute long 'The Mirror of Division' brings the best of Versus X in its most robust expression for this album. Excellent as it is, IMHO "Disturbance" deserves a 4- star rating.
Cesar Inca | 4/5 |


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