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Cloudkicker - Beacons CD (album) cover




Experimental/Post Metal

3.52 | 53 ratings

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3 stars Cloudkicker is a one-man metal project around Ben Sharp, a gifted musician with a good ear for details, delivering an album that sounds surprisingly organic, mature and professional for these types of one-man endeavors.

The music can be roughly described as modern instrumental metal, incorporating the technical riffery and syncopated rhythms that were introduced in metal by the Prog Metal bands from 20 years ago. These things have since become rather "mainstream" or better "standard" in today's metal so whether this is still progressive or not has already been contested on this page and is indeed up for debate. At least it has a certain level of originality in fusing math metal with post-rock. Also the fact that it's instrumental makes it more arty then your normal metal platter.

The quality of the material on the other hand is not up for debate. It's downright good and entertaining throughout, incorporating the math-metal and atmospheric post-rock aspects into nicely moody and harmonious pieces such as Push It Way Up! and the album's highlights It's Bad, We're Hit and Amy I Love You. But at times I miss a good vocal that could make the material more memorable and distinguishable.

More kudos go to the tasty artwork and the altruistic distribution methods of the artist, who spreads his music through his website for whatever amount you wish to pay. It's probably the way of the future, but even though I almost exclusively listen to mp3, I still prefer to have a real physical copy of the music, it's just so much more fun browsing through real CDs then opening a bunch of files in Windows Explorer or one or other media library.

Anyway I'm getting carried away. And the reason is that, even though I think this album is very craftily made, it can't fully capture my unwavering attention as it misses that little extra that would push it to exceptional. 3.5 stars it is.

Bonnek | 3/5 |


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