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Bak: Flower

An Australian duo offering up what they describe as ‘Ethno Prog’, Bak are a Middle Eastern inspired, but still progressive rock act. They themselves suggest ‘Tool doing Disney’s Aladdin’ as an apt description and while not entirely accurate I can see where they are coming from.

All of which doesn’t stop the Flower EP from being a release of two halves. “Too Soon” opens with themes coming to the fore that you might find in Oriental Metal; swirling strings punctuated by exploding drums. The more pensive creep of “Life And Perception Pt.1” heads into the more ethnic music side of things, however, by mid-track a howl of guitars erupts into a slow steady riff and burst of brass that is much more grandiose. “..Pt.2” builds on the theme, revealing a Devin Townsend like chant and chunk-a-riff that unveils a different intention altogether. In many ways what’s come before now feels very much like foreplay. Although by the time the song winds through a much more melodic and harmonised vocal twist you have to be impressed by the breadth of ground covered. Closer “Dasha Hara” booms and boings on tabla drums and the sting of what sounds like sitar, although you can’t help but feel that the actual execution is much more Westernised. With a male vocal dancing over this backdrop the mood becomes intense towards the song’s conclusion.

In all honesty I’m not 100% convinced that Bak blend the disparate styles on show quite as masterfully as they’d like, with the impression that you are often only hearing one side of a two part story hard to shake off. Flower is however an interesting indicator of what could be to come.

Track Listing
1. Too Soon
2. Life & Perception Pt. 1: Existence and Experience
3. Life & Perception Pt. 2: Through Blind Eyes
4. Dasha Hara

Added: December 15th 2018
Reviewer: Steven Reid
Related Link: Flower @ bandcamp
Hits: 337
Language: english

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