STYLE: Rock RATING OUR PRODUCT CODE: 94939-16775 LABEL: Independent FORMAT: CD Album ITEMS: 1
Reviewed by Tony Cummings
Prog rock aficionados have rated the Australian band's 'The Garden' album since it was first released in 2008 but few have expected the newly minted line-up of Unitopia to produce such a striking and magnificently ambitious set. With strong classical/symphonic elements and plenty of jazz influences this is an album which abounds in different tones and unexpected stylistic tones while many of the clichés of prog rock (lashings of Hammond organ or mythical lyrics about the slaying of dragons) have been wisely eradicated. The vocals from Mark Trueack are passionately expressive while his lyrics, like those on song two "Artificial World", perfectly pinpoint the album's overall theme - humanity's increasing descent into thoughtless existence where we become little more than unthinking automons. Equally effective is "Nothing Lasts Forever" with its Beatle-esque and sitar effects while "Not Human Anymore" has some excellent keyboard work from Sean Timms while Matt Williams' lead guitar bites across a Middle-Eastern rhythm. The absolute standout of the set is the epic-lengthed "Tesla" which has surely one of the most ambitious arrangements since the heyday of Wakemen. All in all, a jaw-dropping set from a band who have upped their game to new creative heights.
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