Shades of vintage King Crimson, Porcupine Tree, and Tool permeate the debut from Polish prog band Indukti. Their album S.U.S.A.R., on The Laser's Edge label, is a smouldering cauldron of progressive rock and metal sounds, with plenty of complex passages, atmospheric waves, and ethnic flavored melodies created by violin and harp. The majority of the album is instrumental, and at times the music really smokes. Take the song "No. 11811" for instance, a real barnburner, which starts off like some long lost Mahavishnu Orchestra piece with dueling violin and guitar, then turns into a brutally heavy rocker with thick guitar riffs and crashing drums. Things quiet down quite a bit as the song segues into "...And Weak II", a melancholy fusion based number that again reminds of Mahavishu with perhaps a little Jean Luc Ponty thrown in for good measure. The violin work of Ewa Jablonska is superb here, as she soars above the gentle electric guitar chords of Piotr Kocimski & Maciej Jaskiewicz before the band comes crashing back in with full hard rock force that will instantly remind you of Bruford/Wetton/Cross/Fripp era King Crimson. The vocal pieces "Cold Inside...I" and "Shade" are less jagged and heavy, more in a Marillion, or Porcupine Tree style, yet contain cool melodies and plenty of tasty guitar work.
S.U.S.A.R. will certainly appeal to fans of heavier progressive rock. The mixing of heavy, almost metal-ish riffs with intricate and majestic violin flights adds the right amount of fusion and prog flavor to the CD's seven tunes, and the rhythm section simply impresses from start to finish. Indukti should be an exciting band to catch live I'd imagine as well. Chalk up another winner for Ken Golden's Laser's Edge label.
2) Cold Inside...I
3) No. 11812
6) No. 11811
7) ...And Weak II