With the kind of Arranging and Composition’s that we should take one of the new Progressive Rock bands to come out of New Jersey, The 16 Deadly Improvs are one of the most exquisite bands to come out of the states. Whether you love it or not, it’s extremely an understatement to take note that The Triumph of the 16 Deadly Improvs is not just one of their breathtaking albums of this year, but that everyone in the Prog scene should really take notice of, as one of the new bands to come out of the woodwork of the band’s talent, part fusion, and alternative rock like you’ve never heard it before. This is a beautiful, terrifying, and an unbelievable album as it is a masterpiece.
From instruments turning into a robotic sci-fi opener that recalls the King Crimson Red-era, Sand Palm IV is a great way to introduce the band’s eruption like a volcano that’s about to explode. Guitars and Drums going off like crazy and the keyboards flourishing synth wah-wah crescendo territory, it’s all part of the strength and a celebration that has never been done before. Spirit or Matter: an eerie number that builds the post rock sound off the wall in a mysterious layered rhythm section, ghost-like vocals in the mind of John Wetton, and the guitar solo is as strange than you’ll never know, but brilliant. Pounding drum section and a magnetic bass line by the Vapor Trails-era of Rush meets the Thrak-era of King Crimson of Torpedo in a real upbeat instrumental.
The guitar sounds very much like the Frippertronics and the Alex Lifeson sound as if they had a love child together that hits like a ton of bricks with the Moog itself letting the instruments create a moody and dark atmospheric sound to the composition. For those who are into an experimental blues improvisation, the 3-minute guitar solo and rhythm guitar work on Bugbear Blues is the Improv’s chance to rip with some fierce work and get down to business and not to play and behave like rock stars showing their tongue to see who’s god or not. Invincible Pole Fighters is another terrifying magnum opus that could have been recorded during the Moving Pictures sessions which features excerpts from the documentary, Shall We Protest as if the band had recorded the soundtrack to the movie with a high voltage sound that is one of their best works ever.
On Into Another Time, the vocals have a split personality double tracked style with more guitar synths, bringing into mind of Radiohead meets Pierre Henry, it’s very schizophrenic , but it soon transforms into a middle-eastern avant-garde reverb rein and then it’s the bass and the keyboards setting this ambient new age sound with plot twists and send the listener into a frenzy with a disturbing ending. Rise of the Septopi is a vehicle for the disturbing rumbling guitar work. It’s has an Ash Ra Tempel Egyptian Rock sound, but it’s a fucking tour de force!
Even though it sounds like a Japanese Horror Film and Godzilla’s love child, Gargantua is a fusionesque rocker with the guitar become a funk turned a shrieking psychedelic scream while the bass line is very down to earth and the drums flow the section to give it a disturbing session from Mogwai’s The Hawk is Howling, but it’s a proper structure for dynamic proportions. Sand Palm V is back to the crescendo’s as the Synth’s go haywire while the drums and guitar go apeshit as if they are paying tribute to Zappa and Krautrocker’s Amon Duul II.
The jarring charged electrifying Dear Me gives you some faster time changes to get your blood pumping into sci-fi effects that makes it disturbing yet oddly normal. All of the twist and turns makes the quirky jazz fusion sound of the ‘70s, You’d Make a Lot of Money, makes it very much a catchy instrumental dance beat with a lot of the wah-wah guitar going into interstellar overdrive while the middle finger number against house music of Death To Disco collides with the Mars Volta sound chugging bass riffs and shrieking guitar work along with the synth and cowbell adding the tension to the production techniques.
Then everything gets back to normal. Mag 3 is a representation of Porcupine Tree’s early days layered and Steven Wilson’s production material as if he wrote a disturbing film score for one of Dario Argento’s Profondo Rosso with the child-like sound on the keyboards, drums sounding like a train chugging, and bass and guitar taking turns for a twisted ride into the twisted world of hell, as The Burrowers Beneath builds on atmospheric rhythm, synths raging in the mind of Klaus Schulze and Tangerine Dream’s early days float along the ambient nightmarish chorus along with the Harmonia meets Manuel Gottsching sound of middle-eastern references. It’s these moments that make Fading of my Memories a calm after the storm.
It feels like someone is mourning a loss one and playing the music at the gravesite, the next you want to dance because he/she feels that there shouldn’t be anyone mourning, but a celebration of the dreams and remembrances you have. The closing Sand Palm VI is soaked into the climatic climax as if they are paying homage to Metallica that it’s impossible to describe and fill the rumbling roar into the open road. The Triumph of the 16 Deadly Improvs is an explosive album with Prog, Metal, Post Rock and forward to bring the Avant-Garde Rock sound into a magnetic dreamland sound.
No Bullshit here, believe me, The 16 Deadly Improvs are the next King Crimson.