Mechanical Poet - Woodland Prattlers - 2004 - Aural Music
1.Main Titles 2.Stormchild 3.Bogie In A Coal-Hole 4.Sirens From The Underland 5.Will O’The Wisp 6.Strayed Moppet 7.Old Year’s Merry Funeral 8.Natural Quarternion 9.Shades On A Casement 10.Swamp-Stamp Polka 11.End Credits
Progressive metal has a new ally in the band Mechanical Poet. This group has taken a pretty unique and seldom used approach to their debut release entitled “Woodland Prattlers”. They choose to mix lush orchestration and different vocal stylings all over the record. It is also labeled as the original comic book score, so there is a booklet to go along with this which I was not provided with (a shame since I love that stuff). Fans of the type of music that Dream Theater performs will most likely enjoy this most for it employs a number of the things that those folks lean towards. It was difficult in one sense to describe this other than to simply say it is very easy to enjoy and I found myself taking repeat listens. If you like Progressive and yearn for some difference this might actually do the trick for you.
The group hails from Moscow and it comprised of members Lex Plotnikoff (guitars), Max Samosvat (vocals) and Tom Tokmakoff (drums) along with some other contributors. The guys took an interesting take on the music and it seems that this will be the kind of group that will be good in concert. The CD plays along fluidly through song after song and builds up a setting for your mind to enjoy. Among my favorite tracks on this concept album are “Natural Quarternion” and “Strayed Moppet” as I found myself listening to them more than two times very quickly. I also enjoyed “Shades On A Casement” which added the whole power ballad effect that I like every now and again.
With the group taking this unique approach of more orchestrations than those of their peers it allows their brand of Progressive Metal to retain a freshness that is not too easily achieved. This is especially so when so many of the major players in power metal are doing the same thing over and over instead of taking the nature of musical experimentation to the next level. Bands who choose to do so, are worthy of the title progressive. Let’s welcome Mechanical Poet to the fold.
--Ken Pierce 03.31.05
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