This week the Concert Closet logs some serious frequent flyer miles as the search for all things prog continues the quest...bringing you a relative new comer to the prog garden, whose debut album was released in December 2015. Come along for the ride as the Concert Closet heads to the Netherlands and some quality time with Projection.
Projection categorizes themselves as a prog band with a "melodic 80's vibe..." Appealing to my senses of adventure, intrigue, and curiosity, I believe this is a band worth at least a look-see and listen-to, so let us step up to the prog buffet for an introductory portion.
First serving on the platter is a hard hitting tune called "Running Through Time." The song bursts out of the gate firing on all cylinders and hits you square in the auditory canals. Vocals don't float so much as they flow down like lava from a live volcano. The drumming is a solid foundation on which the guitars rise up and shout. The colors on the canvas are bright and loud; albeit tinged with the dark outer edge that comes with running down a dark alley at night. Projection emits top notes of Asia and Transatlantic on this piece....the digital alarm clock that opens the songs seems to peel back the curtain a la Marty McFly...
The next offering served up is a bit more cranial; a deep cutting tune called "Hypocrite." Projection opens the song with a soft, music box-like tranquility that belies lyrics strong enough to hammer a stake in the ground without the need to wrap everything in loud, hollow sound that bounces around for no apparent reason. Projection has a point to make and the guitar strikes at just the just right moments, while the drums once again batter the periphery without leaving you lost and confused. There is an Alan Parsons Project/10CC vibe running through this song...a bit cerebral without forgetting that prog can make you think and tap your feet at the same time.
Liner Notes...Projection is a five man prog operation hailing from the Netherlands and consisting of Herman Wiggers on lead vocals, Peter Pampiermole on keyboards and vocals, Frank van Eerden on guitar and vocals, Jurgen ten Have on bass and vocals, and Richard Immink on drums and vocals. Projection's debut release, a concept album titled "Realitivity," is an impressive opening act.
Concept albums in and of themselves can be difficult to assemble...timelines are important; mood, tempo, flow...it all plays a part. Of course the listener must be able to decipher what message the music is trying to convey. Alan Parsons was a master of the concept album, Chris Rudolph from Timelight prefers the listener interpret the music in a way that touches them, and Philippe Longchamps from Atlas Volt enjoys the intimacy of reaching inside the listener's head and touching them with a narrative that drives a point home. All are valid--and equal parts difficult and
glorious--if the artist manages to nail it. With "Realitivity," Projection does just that; they nail it with a sledgehammer. This album has deep roots in the thought provoking section of the prog garden...not as deep (perhaps) as King Crimson, Pink Floyd, or Genesis--yet. Remember; this is Projection's initial offering--not their swansong.
The third and final selection for the week is yet one more from a deep, dark corner called "Erase ." The guitar work is almost ghoulish as the vocals entwine themselves amongst the chords. The drums are softer here...soothing of a sort. You anticipate a hit to the inside of your head that never quite materializes. Oh, the tempo picks up; but quickly settles back down. The haunting background/subconscious vocals continue throughout, reminding you that although there is no one else in the room...you are never really alone. Learn more about Projection at their website Projectionband. Follow your instinct and your subconscious while you check out their bandcamp page to make a purchase at Projection Bandcamp. Of course there is always Facebook for those so inclined to keep up with all the latest band info at Projection Facebook, and the last bastion of immediate information, Twitter, where you can connect @Projection_band.
I chose "Delirious" for the clip to introduce you to the band for a few reasons. First, this song paints an extremely accurate and intricate portrait of what Projection is. The music rolls through the headphones both purposefully and melodically, like sour cream melting down the sides of a hot baked potato. Second--and more importantly I believe--the heart and soul of the concept behind the curtain comes raining down like a summer thunderstorm...the struggle to deal with reality as life continues to sling arrows and torment...yet never forget there is always hope if you focus on the light. Projection has mined a nerve center in the prog garden that will keep you hitting the replay button...
...and once again seven days fall off the calendar like so much beach sand off your sandals. Projection cuts deep but manages to avoid any fatal wounds. One of the pleasures of being the "progmaster" on this blog is the exposure to so many variations of the prog theme. Projection uses darkness to expose the light; reminding you that while you feel yourself falling deeper into the abyss, there is always hope.
The Netherlands are quite nice this time of year...but alas; the search for all things prog continues on...and so the Concert Closet is preparing to extend the journey once more...until next week...