Label: ProgRock Records
Label Website: www.progrockrecords.com
Release Date: 2010
Not sure how many of you remember the German prog band Scythe who crafted two interesting albums some years back. Well,T, better known to his family as Thomas Thielen, was the vocalist on those two CDs but here he is on his third solo disc entitledAnti-Matter Poetry. And once again he brings his multi-instrumental talents to bear on a powerful disc that hardly seems like it was created by one person. Anti-Matter Poetry is every bit a 68-minute concept production of modern prog.
Anti-Matter Poetry is made up of 6 tracks all of which are on the longish side. In fact the shortest of the bunch clocks in at eight-minutes. The over all tone is somewhat dark, perhaps somber, even melancholic however musically there are many intense moments of full orchestration that create a grandness to the music contained here. Things get underway with “The Wasted Lands” [9:37] which starts with a cacophony of sounds slowly coming into audible range; searing guitars, phased distorted voices, synth background washes and a throbbing bass line. At about the two minute mark the new guitar line gives off a bit of a Pink Floyd vibe. The drums softly come in at the three-minute mark and then the song crashes into gear at 3:30 where the guitar riff starts plying the central melody. Here the music takes on a very majestic and sweeping tone as the heavy orchestration is all consuming. Then everything subsides and we’re left with a filtered piano and voice as the vocals begin. It sounds like it’s coming from a cheap radio, distant and thin. T’s vocals remind me a lot of modern era Marillion mixed with some David Bowie. Given the length of these compositions there’s lots of room for instrumental virtuosity. Solos are everywhere on both guitars and keyboard but they’re also mixed in with sound effects and voice clips creating a kind of cinematic feel. You hear bits of music start with one sonic style and change up to something completely different. One moment the music is richly orchestrated with all manner of crescendos and choirs and the next is something that’s more guitar heavy. All the musical dynamics are present and overall there is a very modern feel to the music.
I find that with the music of T, you have to give the disc a few spins before the melodies and song arrangements start to work on me. And Anti-Matter Poetry is no different; it’s just so musically dense. On first listen it’s all a bit intense, but with each listen I started to hear the spaces and the intricacy. This is a solid release and one that will certainly appeal to his fan base but also to anyone interested in a modern progressive rock with loads of symphonic embellishments.