Chimp Spanner 'All Roads Lead Here'
Produced & mixed by Paul Antonio Ortiz
1. Dark Age of Technology, 2.Engrams, 3.Mobius pt1.,
4. Mobius pt2., 5. Mobius pt3., 6. Cloud City
Paul Antonio Ortiz – Instrumentation
By this point in the game most of us are aware of what to expect from Chimp Spanner: progressive ideas, down tuned groove, cheesy synths and a whole load of Van Halen-esque leads. That’s exactly what we get here on ‘All Roads Lead Here’, although in a slightly darker shade than previous outing ‘At The Dreams Edge’. ‘All Roads Lead Here’ is more cinematic in the grandiose sense of the word than it is cinematic in the sense of ‘Top Gun’.
In particular the three-part epic ‘Mobius’ almost seethes with a darker edge compared to previous Chimp Spanner material, the aggressive bouts of double bass drumming and crushing riffs that lead ‘Mobius pt 2′ in particular are almost out-of-place in a Chimp Spanner record, despite the association with the djent scene that Chimp Spanner enjoys, the band’s music is hardly Meshuggah. These more aggressive tendencies serve to highlight just how strong the sense of dynamics and melody is throughout the rest of the EP. Every song seems more, for want of a better word, cohesive as a whole in itself, as well as part of the release. ‘Engrams’ for example is a less than 2 minute melodic interlude, a type of track that on many releases doesn’t work outside the release as whole, but surprisingly its a track I can easily see myself revisiting out with the boundaries of the EP. In the digital age to find any artist capable of producing a cohesive piece of work is no mean feat, in much of the modern metal scene it’s almost unheard of, and for this Ortiz deserves nothing but praise. Depth is the word that comes into mind when describing this EP in terms of dynamics, instrumentation and emotional impact. That last one is perhaps the most important as emotional impact is not something I instantly associate with instrumental metal albums.
What else strikes me about the EP is how well it will translate live, hopefully when I catch the band this evening I’m not forced to eat my words. Each track posses its own monstrous groove, multiple dynamics and only one runs over 5 minutes. That and Ortiz is a seemingly a natural talent for writing guitar lines that demand immediate air guitaring. Even from a non- guitarist like myself. These are all surely ingredients of inevitable success. Certainly if there’s any justice in the world they will be anyway.
‘All Roads Lead Here’ is available now via Basick Records in a variety of formats including CD Digipack, Digital download and limited edition Vinyl featuring exclusive remixes of ‘Supererogation’ from the ‘At The Dreams Edge’ release. Simply click here to be taken to the wealth of options available.