Band: Unified Past
Band Website: www.unifiedpast.com
Label: Melodic Revolution Records
Label Website: www.melodicrevolutionrecords.com
Release Date: 2013
Unified Past came together in 1999 but in fact the memberís musical roots go back even further. Their new album is entitled Spots and it is their sixth release. Today the band is a trio of original members Steve Speelman (bass, keyboards, guitars, vocals) and Victor Tassone (drums, percussion, effects, backing vocals) along with Dave Mickelson (bass) who actually became a full-time recording member of the band in 2012. Musically you will likely see Unified Past identified with the Progressive Metal crowd although truth be told there is more to their sound than that.
Spots is a full 59-minutes of music; eleven tracks, six of them instrumental workouts. And the music runs the gamut from the opening ďBlankĒ [5:17] and its classic stadium-rock feel to the jazzy fusion of ďHotĒ [4:44]. There is a little bit of everything in-between. I got the feel this is very much a guitaristís album, with keyboards very much in the background in the support role. This shouldnít be surprising given the guitar is founding member Speelmanís primary instrument. The progressive metal vibe does make an appearance here and there and itís a pretty bold statement when itís on the scene, although the vocals are rarely in that over-reaching earnest style so popular in that genre. In many respects, perhaps because itís a trio format I canít help but get a Rush feel from some of the compositions but that is also mixed with elements of Dream Theater too. In the end when itís mixed together the sound is very unique to the band. The overall sense of the music is dramatic, mostly up-tempo and bombastic with plenty of progressive rock twists and turns. Itís a big thundering sound rolling out of the speakers.
Unified Past have been around for quite some time and thereís no question their fan base will love the music on display on Spots. But if youíve never heard them before and like the idea of heavier music with lotís of proggy embellishment then Iím guessing you too will enjoy the music on Spots. The packaging includes some excellent cover art from Ed Unitsky so that and the music certainly makes for a tantalizing release. Great stuff!