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Thirteen of Everything: Welcome, Humans

It's really cool when you see a band kind of grow and mature right in front of your very eyes. Texas based prog rock band Thirteen of Everything sent Sea of Tranquility a copy of their demo a few years back not long after they put the band together, which we reviewed, quite favorably I might add. The band has since has been busy putting their debut together and shopping for a record label. Well, they finished the CD and found a label, none other than the prolific progressive rock label Musea from France, home to many prog bands and artists. The band has also had a few line-up changes since then, and now consist of Ted Thomas on drums, percussion & vocals, Mick Peters on bass, Chapman Stick, bass pedals, acoustic guitar, and vocals, Joe Funk on guitars & vocals, and Thad Miller on keyboards.

The band has re-recorded the songs from the original demo, plus added a slew of new material. One thing I noticed immediately is that no longer do Thirteen of Everything sound like a Gabriel era Genesis or Fish era Marillion style band, other than some similarities on a few of the tunes in the guitar and keyboard department. Gone are the Fish/Gabriel-esque vocals, and the song arrangments have taken on a more muscular tone. Not that the band has approached prog-metal intensity here, but you can detect some aggression to the music that takes the songs out of the generic neo-prog camp and into something more meaningful. "Let it Go" now has more focus and certainly more "ooomph" thanks to Funk's meaty guitar work and Miller's thick wall of synth and organ sounds. The moody and atmospheric "Sleepdance" is a great excuse for Miller to shine, with vast organ tones and nimble synthesizer runs, plus a acrobatic guitar solo from Funk that mixes many off-kilter phrasings ala Steve Hackett. The Peters penned "Replay" is a haunting tale of regret through the eyes of a convict, and the lyrical prog of "Bird in the Hand" is an uplifting piece with lush guitar chords, melodic piano, and the passionate vocals of drummer Thomas. The real treat however is the seven-part epic "Late for Dinner", a sci-fi extravaganza that will ring familiar to those who have just seen the film War of the Worlds. Filled with humorous yet dramatic lyrics and classy instrumentation, this is a very satisying closing number to a very enjoyable album.

Welcome, Humans is highly recommended to prog rock fans of all ages, especially those who like the accessibility of neo-prog but want a little more meat as far as musicianship and lyrical content goes.


Track Listing
1) Flying East (9:22)
2) Let it Go (6:35)
3) Sleepdance (11:08)
4) Replay (5:42)
5) Semprini (4:15)
6) Bird in Hand (10:11)
Late for Dinner (26:14)
7) i-Xenophile (3:54)
8) ii-Soul on a Stick (2:54)
9) iii-Doom (2:15)
10) iv-Gloom (1:54)
11) v-Real Estate (5:09)
12) vi-Three Hundred Years Asleep (2:23)
13) vii-Xenophobe (7:45)

Added: July 4th 2005
Reviewer: Pete Pardo
Score:
Related Link: Band Website
Hits: 2687
Language: english

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