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Contrarian: Minor Complexities

Contrarian are a progressive rock/metal band from New Jersey whose debut CD Minor Complexities probably fell under the radar for many folks in 2007, and that's a shame. If you are into hard driving prog rock that draws influences from Kansas, Rush, Styx, and perhaps a little Dream Theater & Spock's Beard, then you'll want to investigate this release. The band is comprised of Joe Leming on vocals, Tim Boney on guitars, bass, and keyboards, and drummer Michael White, but also features guest violinist Lance Cockrell and cellist Eric Jorgenson.

It's hard not to hear the strong influence of the great American band Kansas on some of these tunes, especially "Operation Overlord", 'Fear and Trembling", "Barricades", and "Plato's Cave", not just because of the violin, but also due to the crisp and crunchy guitar work and symphonic keyboards. Leming's vocals at times also have a Steve Walsh flavor to them, mixed with a touch of Geddy Lee. Boney is quite the talented player, as he rips into plenty of searing solos and crunchy rhythm work, but his layers of Hammond and Moog sounds are also not to be missed, giving some of these hard rock songs plenty of prog sophistication.

Other strong cuts here include the muscular "Another Day", the acoustic majesty of "You're My Prayer", and the melodic prog gem "Sanguine Bells". If catchy hard rocking songs with plenty of instrumental interplay isn't enough to sell you, the lyrics here are also worth noting, as the band covers a wide variety of topics from World War II, philosophy, literature, and personal reflection. It all makes for a very enjoyable package from this little band from New Jersey, who recently have expanded their line-up and perform many live shows in their local area. Be sure to check them out if you have the opportunity and experience Minor Complexities firsthand.

Track Listing
1 Operation Overlord
2 Twilight Of The Idols
3 Sting Of Fate
4 Fear And Trembling
5 Barricades
6 Another Day
7 Just Doing Time
8 Plato's Cave
9 You're My Prayer
10 Stand Or Fall
11 Sanguine Bells
12 The Final Hand

Added: March 16th 2008
Reviewer: Pete Pardo
Related Link: Band Website
Hits: 3726
Language: english

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