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t: Anti-Matter Poetry

Thomas Thielen, otherwise known as t, is a German multi-instrumentalist formerly of the avant-garde band Scythe. His first solo album, Nave, was released in 2002 and was followed up with Voices in 2006. His new release Anti-MatterPoetry is one of the more interesting progressive rock releases I have heard this year and Thielen does a great job considering he plays all the instruments himself. This does not sound at all like a one man band as there are a variety of instruments present and it is quite a complex work.

The music on Anti-Matter Poetry is definitely progressive but you will also here bits of industrial, techno, symphonic and neo. Thielen throws a few curve balls along the way with various tempo changes and a high degree of dynamics within the songs. Heavier sections coincide with mellower parts where the instrumentation slowly builds before often returning to calmer moods. At times the music is quite atmospheric and bands like Porcupine Tree, Pink Floyd and Gazpacho come to mind. Thielen is an accomplished musician and there are some nice guitar and keyboard parts found throughout. The crunchier guitar rhythms and soaring leads at times reminded me of David Gilmour or Steve Rothery of Marillion.

David Bowie could also be reference point, especially regarding the vocals. Just listen to "Scavengers and Hairdressers" with its industrial beats and squelching guitar sounds harkening back to Bowie's Earthling album. The soaring guitar leads have a Marillion feel and Thielen makes good use of effects throughout the song. The beginning of "The Wasted Lands" has a Wall-era Pink Floyd vibe with sampled sounds and moody synths. The music is subdued as Thielen prefers a more subtle approach to song craft with slow build ups and quieter sections with delicate keyboards and poignant vocals.

The fourteen minute "Phantom Pain Scars" features lovely layered vocals and a touching piano melody before muted electronica-style beats and heavier guitars add some extra intensity before poignant keys and soaring guitar take hold. There is much happening here as is befitting an epic track.

The album's longest song is the adventurous "The Rear View Mirror Suite", a three part epic that starts mellow before the symphonic arrangement slowly builds and some emotive lead guitar ala Marillion takes center stage. The dramatic rhythms of guitar and keyboards will rock your world.

This is another excellent release on ProgRock Records and one of the nicest surprises this year. Melodic and accessible, yet complex enough to satisfy that prog itch we so often get, Anti-Matter Poetry should not be passed by.

Track Listing:
1. The Wasted Lands
2. Scavengers and Hairdressers
3. Phantom Pain Scars
4. I Saved the World
5. The Rear View Mirror Suite
a. The Echo of the Gap
b. Last Dance
c. The Grace of Boredom
6. Anti-Matter Poetry

Added: December 5th 2010
Reviewer: Jon Neudorf
Related Link: Artist's Official Site
Hits: 3382
Language: english

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