THE STRANGER

(AUSTRALIA)

KALEIDOSCOPE

(2021)
LABEL:

AUTRE LABEL

GENRE:

PROGRESSIVE METAL

TAGS:
Growl, Technical
"With "Kaleidoscope", The Stranger has established itself as a promising new band in the progressive metal wave."
RHUM1 (09.05.2024)  
5/5
(0) opinions (1) comment(s)
Formed in 2013, The Stranger made waves in 2017 with their self-titled debut album. Four years on, the Australian quintet return to confirm the potential glimpsed on their debut effort.

As its name suggests, "Kaleidoscope" is dense, incredibly rich, and resembles a condensation of the best of modern progressive metal, in which we can find influences to current references in the genre such as Leprous, Haken, Caligula's Horse... But to sum up The Stranger to these influences alone, however flattering they may be, would be to do it only half justice, for the Australians' strength lies in their ability to offer music of subtle variety.

Tom Frayne's vocal performance, with a range somewhere between Ross Jennings (Haken) and Jim Grey (Caligula's Horse), is clearly one of the band's strong points ('The Gemini'). Screaming vocals are never used in abundance ('Creatures in the Canopy'), but rather strategically, adding an extra dose of energy without ever sounding out of place. Better still, for those who don't like guttural vocals, this could work surprisingly well. The other musicians are not to be outdone: you can feel that every note has been carefully chosen to serve the overall composition. Nothing is superfluous: the riffs are incisive, the solos melodic even in the brief moments of shredding, the drums are precise, the bass blends into the background but sometimes comes to the fore when necessary. No ego-boosting, everyone works for the common good.

As a result, the compositions appear finely chiselled. Admittedly, die-hard progressive fans will be skeptical about an album on which no track exceeds seven minutes. But quantity is not necessarily a guarantee of quality, and The Stranger proves this by marvelously condensing its subject matter down to the essentials. The result is an album with no downtime, each track brimming with countless ideas ('Jester') and flowing harmoniously together to create a captivating, remarkably fluid listening experience.

Finally, The Stranger retains a distinct and easily recognizable sonic identity. This natural versatility is what separates the good progressive bands from the exceptional. With "Kaleidoscope", The Stranger certainly claims to be in the latter category. 
- Official website
SIMILAR BANDS:
CALIGULA'S HORSE, HAKEN, LEPROUS

TRACK LISTING:
01. Eleventh Hour. 5:34
02. The Gemini. 4:53
03. Jungles. 5:59
04. Jester. 6:41
05. Coming Home. 1:58
06. Siren. 5:22
07. Creatures in the Canopy. 4:50
08. The Devil You Don't. 6:18
09. Kaleidoscope. 6:39)

LINEUP:
Andrew Taylor: Guitares
Daniel O'brien: Batterie
Kalen Austin: Guitares / Choeurs
Linc Morse: Basse
Tom Frayne: Chant
   
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STRUCK
15/05/2024
  0
Nouvel arrivant très intéressant dans la scène metal prog moderne dont on attend la confirmation avec impatience (7,5)
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