ELF PROJECT

ELF PROJECT

ELF PROJECT

Layers of melodic vocal harmonies sit atop a foundation of driving and propulsive rhythms while snaky guitar riffs and lush keyboard washes percolate throughout the mix. The music is full of unexpected twists and turns; from bright, hook-laden vocal-oriented pop stylings to complex proggy instrumentals or the sudden introduction of Middle Eastern motifs or classical guitar. It is clear that what is another wave of progressive rock is taking shape; bands such as Frost*, Little Atlas, Alias Eye, & It Bites as well as label mates Flutter Effect & TCP are avoiding the paint-by-numbers scheme, not playing it 'safe as milk' by re-dubbing the 70's sound, cloning the Dream Theater mantra with prog-metal tendencies, or going the 'neo-prog' route by trying to be the next Pendragon or Marillion. New York's Elf Project is another band that creates music without this sense of urgency to follow the stereotypical progressive rock formulas. What has become an uncategorical form of adult contemporary rock/alternative has proven to have no boundaries and Mirage is an album that stays true to a band's vision with perplexing diversity - molded within artistic focus. Between the synthesizers, harmonized vocals, layering, Rothery-esque guitars, solos that are to-the-point, intense arrangements, and key changes/complex signature runs, there is a balance of vocal tunes and instrumental interludes, whereas the vocal tunes range from dark complex power pop (Lessons") to jumpy classic alt-rock meets prog ("The Road of Change") to early-Yes tunage melded with psychedelic overtures ("The Go Between") to what sounds like a long lost Peter Murphy cut ("Serene") to a cover of the Beetles "Norwegian Wood" (which is not overdone, pretty much stripped) - but when it comes to the instrumental tracks, they act more as flowing intermissions, rather than wild tangent oriented jam sessions, although chaos does find it's way with "Jackhammer" and "Witchcraft," it's all about the groove

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