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Bushwhack: Bushwhack

Bushwhack are a Connecticut quartet that have released their self titled, fully instrumental debut CD that is best defined as background fodder. This 13 track CD has songs that were obviously written for vocals, but without being able to place the proper singer, were recorded in their instrumental form. With a nod to the likes of bands like Porcupine Tree, Rush and Dream Theater, Bushwhack try to capture that vibe, but fall far short.

CD opener, "In Solitude", is a moody, piano laden piece of electronica that seems right out of a horror movie interlude. This rolls into "The Greatest Wall", a song that has a Prog Rock feel, but never seems to hit its mark. The musicianship throughout this Bushwhack record is a bit sub par for a Prog Rock type of band, especially for an instrumental group. The members of Bushwhack are quite young, being 18 & 19 years old, so time is on their side, but there are no virtuoso performances or anything that would make one run back to the wood shed to practice their craft, but on that note they don't suck either.

Highlight tracks are "Mariachi Massacre", "Menace" and the CD closer, "Honor", but much of this CD just won't draw much of your attention away from whatever you are doing. This is one of those types of records that is best served as a background to whatever you are doing because of its lack of anything that would reach out and grab you. Not much here to make you want to play this CD over and over... but your plants might like it!

Track Listing

  1. In Solitude
  2. The Greatest Wall
  3. Future's Passed
  4. Guacamole
  5. Sea Of Tranquility
  6. Menace
  7. Sever The Sky
  8. Sirens
  9. Introspection
  10. In Flames
  11. Mariachi Massacre
  12. Head Trauma
  13. Honor

Added: April 21st 2008
Reviewer: Butch Jones
Related Link: Band Website
Hits: 1773
Language: english

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Bushwhack: Bushwhack
Posted by Pete Pardo, SoT Staff Writer on 2008-04-22 07:40:36
My Score:

Produced by veteran prog/AOR mastermind Jeff Cannata, the self-titled debut from instrumental progressive metal quartet Bushwhack is a 13 track collection of melodic songs long on atmosphere and lush melodies. It's a quality package all around (stunning digipack and artwork guys!), with the music well played and thought out. Many of the tracks are not what you would expect as far as instrumental fare goes, in fact, you can almost imagine vocals being dropped in on any of them, which wouldn't necessarily change the tone one bit. That being said, if you are expecting instrumental tunes with lots of fancy chops and soaring musical passages, this might not be the CD for you. Most of these songs are quite moody and atmospheric, often times punctuated by crunchy guitar riffs and ethereal keyboards, but the band never seems to really uncork and get cookin'. While a song like "Head Trauma" features some beefy riffs and Middle Eastern melodies, you almost want these youngsters to rip into some spirited jams to bring the tune up a notch, but it never happens.

Overall, Bushwhack is a pleasing listen, well produced, and contains crisp, classy instrumentation from these young musicians. Unfortunately, it never rises much above that, as none of these songs jump out of your speakers and really grab you the way the most successful instrumental prog or metal releases do. The talent seems to be there, so perhaps next time around the guys in Bushwhack will really show us what they have.

2004 Sea Of Tranquility
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