Italian Progmetalband Kingcrow may not be very big nor famous, apparently they already have some records that are nothing short of masterpieces. The entire prog community was holding its breath for this new one. Predecessor ‘In Crescendo’ set a very high standard for this sixth studio effort, so they better outdo themselves for this album.
It’s not my style to just dismiss an album that was sent to my by e-mail. Honestly, I’d never heard of Kingcrow before, so google man had to jump to my help. Saying that critics dug their previous work is a severe understatement. Some very positive things were written about the Italians. It made me particularly curious to check their album.
Opening this one is the catchy yet fresh The Moth. Somehow the Italians seem to find a perfect ballance between poppy catchiness and alternative rhythms. The chorus with slightly ill-fitting text doesn’t even bother me. Apparently, many people make a comparison with bands such as Porcupine Tree, Queensrÿche and Pink Floyd. They kind of remind me more of Tool, with their dark, slowly hypnotising grooves.
Songs such as Adrift are a good example of that. It’s all backed by acousic guitars laying the slow but steady rhythm. Slow Down on the other hand has lots of distorted vocals and drum rhythms that remind me more of Dream Theater. The lead guitar sounds very John Petrucci as well.
After the once more very Tool sounding The Deeper Divide, On The Barren Ground has Faith No More written all over it, particularly during the chorus. And there lies the negative in this album. While it’s filled with great catchy and not at all overdone progmetal, most of the songs do sound somewhat derivative. Just being a very critical prick for a while. A very short while. Because it’s hard to stay a critical prick when listening to some high quality prog that lies good in the ear.
Towards the end, we do get an idea of what the typical Kingcrow sound would be like. Songs such as At The Same Place or Eidos start out very slowly and smoothly with acoustic sounds to gradially get more intense and pull you in without you even noticing. When album number seven will be announced, at least one more reviewer will be pretty much drooling all over the place like a hungry puppy.