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Astrosoniq – Quadrant: Review

November 1, 2010 Leave a comment Go to comments

On October 10, Astrosoniq is due to release a new record via Exile on Mainstream. It is to be their fifth full-length release and is named Quadrant. By fans and critics alike, this has been regarded as possibly their best creation to this point. I would not know, having never listened to any of their previous efforts. However, a listen to this fine album left me with only good thoughts.

The Music (rating: B+)

  1. Faustian Bargain
  2. Cloud of Decay
  3. As Soon as They Got Airbourne
  4. Play it Straight
  5. Lured
  6. Bloom
  7. Zero
  8. Downfall Lover
  9. Bored
  10. Sin

In this album, Astrosoniq draws from a variety of sounds. Included genres are space rock, industrial, metal, electronic, and even country. But it is not a messy mash of styles. They are all blended together quite nicely. There are moments which are straight up metal alongside those that are country with a spacey touch. Having the strong variety without compromising flow is the most notable aspect of Quadrant.

The instrumentals are capable at adapting to the different styles, but not particularly at excelling within them. For example, the contrasting styles of the tracks 1 and 2 (the first having a strong electronic feel; the second having a more industrial touch) shows the instruments survivability in different musical environments. For those who listen to all music, the combination and presentation of various feels is appreciable. However, for a genre-based listener, one may be able to find better options within the specified field of music. It is circumstantial, based on if one is looking for a certain style of music or anything good to listen to.

As for myself, not overly picky about genres, there is much enjoyment to be found in Quadrant. There is much overall value due to its diversity, though in general does not particularly fascinate with its instrumental performance or musical crafting. That is certainly not to say that it is lacking in either, but simply that the audience should not expect to be astounded by anything but its stylistic individuality and intriguing nature. The guitar is likely the most impressive instrument, giving neat riffs like on “Cloud of Decay,” as well as nice fancy country rhythms like on “Bloom”. For the most part, the remainder of the band rely less on technical ability and more on inspiration and phrasing. Though there is nothing wrong with this, the members merely are unable to generate a noticeable spark with this approach. The product is surely above par, but short of spectacular. Nonetheless, the band does well together using what they have to create a respectable standard of music.

Quadrant is a very well-done piece of art. The members of Astrosoniq did a fine job, but nothing too mind-blowing. Although it does not truly stand out with its instrumentals or musical ingenuity, it is definitely compensated for with the overall distinctness in feel. For those who are looking for a specific style, this is likely not the right album. On the other hand, Quadrant is able to put forth a fine hour of music to those who are not specifically looking for anything aside from quality music itself.

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