Band: Distorted Harmony
Band Website: www.distortedharmony.com
Label: Independent Release
Release Date: 2012
I’m not sure how much opportunity there is for Prog Metal and Prog Rock groups in Israel, but I’m starting to think there will soon be more, because here’s yet another band, Distorted Harmony who’ve been able to meld the two genres together on Utopia, their first release and they’ve come up with something that is quite unique. This quintet is made up of: Misha Soukhinin (vocals), Guy Landau (guitars), Yoav Efron (keyboards), Iggy Cohen (bass) and Yogev Gabay (drums). The band list such influences as Dream Theater, Porcupine Tree and Muse but they’ve really worked at creating their own interpretation of that inspiration.
The 54-minutes that make up the six-tracks of Utopia display an amazing variety of sounds, from the classical piano arpeggio that open the disc which then slides into a more symphonic opening flourish which then coalesces in the more prog-metal-ish crescendo, all of which subsides at the two-minute mark giving the opening track “Kono Yume” [8:40] a very grand, panoramic feel. The heavy guitar used in Distorted Harmony offers more than just prog-metal crunch. Way more in fact. Much like one of their influences, Porcupine Tree used the heavy sounds to off-set the softer more delicate, so too is that the approach here. I have trouble even hearing the music of Distorted Harmony as prog-metal because of this. I tend to hear this as more heavy symphonic…but with a great crunchy guitar. I also love the many dark and foreboding minor chords they create before offering up the major resolutions. As expected the length of these pieces allows for plenty of musical change-ups; some busy and full of notes others less so instead more symphonic. These stops and starts give the music a great sonic dynamic incorporating simulated strings, acoustic guitars and so forth.
I have to say this: the band list Dream Theatre as one of their influences and one of my favorite DT albums is Octovarium, well Distorted Harmony have captured the essence of all that I loved about that album and made it their own on Utopia. Dare I say it, making it even a bit better! Better in my mind because the balance of soft and heavy is more, well, balanced. As far as heavy discs go; this has become one of my favorites. For fans of heavy symphonic prog, I highly recommend it. And we’re all in luck because in an effort to get their music out in the hands of listeners, the band has made the disc available as a free download from their website. Check’em out, I think you’ll really like them.