By William Hoffman | email@example.com | @Wilbur_Hoffman
Clocking in well over an hour of music on their newest 12-track album Metamorphosis, Elemental Groove Theory is proving that there is still a place for improvisation, creativity and long instrumental solos in modern music.
The variety of styles on this album is astonishing, combining folky acoustic guitar strumming, funky bass lines, killer rock drum fills and even metal licks.
The band is spot-on when they say in their description that they are a new genre of music. The closest definition I could give the album is acid rock, but by definition that genre is pretty vague. Though whatever the style, it seems to bring back elements of rock, blues and funk to a modern electronic era in a very original way.
Every instrument supports the other with great use of empty space. In fact, the breaks in the music might be my favorite part of the album (not on a bad way). Everything stops for a brief moment and I think, “who do I get to hear solo next and in what style will it be playing?”
The album seems to be structured oddly, with the best songs filling up the end of the album and some of the weaker songs being pushed to the front, and long songs could really turn some people off when it takes 20 minutes to get to the best tracks on the album.
The single released earlier this year and second song on the album, “Disguise,” is actually one of the less impressive songs on the album, although certainly an ambitious song mixing a lot of divergent styles.
I’m a sucker for funk and long organ and bass guitar solos (sue me), so the song “The First Street Heat,” caught my attention when halfway through synth organ comes screaming overtop the drum break.
From that point on the album just kicks in a funk feel that the band is more well known for and they are quite frankly better at writing and producing that style of music. Even the last three songs get more electronic but still have that funk feel with long instrumental solos.
Unfortunately this is likely the last album we will see from EGT as the band is splitting up after this final week long tour promoting the album. So Athens residence can jam out to this groups unique style on last time at The Union Saturday at 9 p.m.
Music seem to be moving in a direction slightly away from rap and teen pop that has characterized the mid ‘2000s. Folk rock groups like Mumford and Sons are coming up in prominence as well as singles from bands like Foster The People, Neon Trees and even American Idol winner Philip Philips, producing more socially conscious music that used to only be in the underground now making it on the Billboard charts.
EGT’s style of music is more prominent in underground styles of music now especially in nationally popular bands like Tame Impala from Australia. So we’ll see where this trend leads the music industry in the upcoming years and only then will we know if EGT was on the cutting edge of something big.
You can listen to Metamorphosis on Bandcamp for a number of free listens and purchase the album digitally for $10 or at EGT’s Saturday show for a physical copy. A lot of time had to go into producing and writing this complicated music and it speaks volumes about the talent of the members. I’m sad to see EGT go but I’m sure future projects will prove just as fruitful and engaging as this band has and I wish them the best of luck in their future endeavors.