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Amygdala - Amygdala CD (album) cover





3.08 | 24 ratings

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Conor Fynes
Prog Reviewer
2 stars 'Amygdala' - Amygdala (3/10)

Japan arguably has the strongest Zeuhl music scene outside of France, as well as an avant- garde community so large that the Japavant term was invented to label them. Amygdala is a Japanese two piece band that brings their own rendition of progressive chamber music in the style of Univers Zero and Magma at their darkest. As far as my experience with the Japanese movement of avant-garde music goes, it has brought me some of the strangest music I have ever heard, and most of it has been brilliant. Although Amygdala show promise in regards to their grasp of the dark chamber style, a poor execution mixed with somewhat aimless compositions make this self-titled debut into something of a failed experiment.

Amygdala derive much of their sound from Univers Zero, at the point in their careers when their music was at its darkest. Amygdala's debut is filled with apocalyptic chord changes and unsettling melodies, but that's around where the similarities with Univers Zero are cut painfully short. Although the chamber prog style is boldly attempted here, Amygdala fall short on several notes. Most noticeably is their overbearing use of fake instruments. Although a drum machine and other emulated sounds can be expected from an amateur or even semi-professional project, the machine sounds cheap and downright irritating by the end of the record. The pianos are given a great deal of the lead responsibility, but that does not stop them from sounding utterly programmed and lifeless. In short, 'Amygdala' is an album that sounds more like a cheap demo than a legitimate full-length debut. The composition enjoys the sort of multi- layered sound that I have come to expect from chamber prog, but these songs suffer from an aimless direction that makes the weak sound sting even harder. 'Amygdala' is not a hopeless album, but the band will have to bring more to the table on subsequent releases in order to impress me.

Conor Fynes | 2/5 |


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