An Italian instrumental prog-metal trio that doesn't bother to put song titles on its CD packaging better engage me so well that I don't even care what the songs are called. In the case of BFH -- drummer Maurizio Boco, bassist Lorenzo Feliciati and guitarists Mats Hedberg -- and the eight tracks on their debut The Gate, mission accomplished.
Chunky riffs, tribal drums, flamenco melodies, Middle-Eastern flourishes, and even some chanting combine to lend a worldly perspective to BFH's seasoned sound. Each player is an accomplished musician in his own right, and The Gate sounds like they've each finally found their creative equals.
At times echoing Liquid Tension Experiment and Bozzio Levin Stevens, BFH jam on some tracks and break down the instruments on others. Maybe this stuff is rehearsed, maybe it isn't. But unlike many instrumental trios, these guys don't repeat the same musical experiments song after song. Rather, they challenge listeners, along with themselves, to use their imaginations and create evocative soundscapes that reveal new layers with every listen. Well done.