Echo US – S/T

Where to start a review of an album that describes a genre of its own? That gives a new experimental impulse to electro as well as progressive rock? Well, let me start with saying that I might not be the right person to review this album, as progrock is not my field. But then again, that does not tell you a lot about this album, so let’s just start by describing the man behind the project.

Echo Us is Ethan Matthews. The progrock fans might remember him as the man behind the keyboards in the band Greyhaven. The influences of this band, that split up long ago, can still be heard on this self-titled debut-album.

The music however is more like dark progresive electro, that can not easily be compared to any other band in the electro scene, nor the progrock scene. Still coming closer to the old progrock scene. Even a band like early Genesis springs to my mind when listening to this cd.

Ethan shows he can combine explicit music knowledge (gathered through both school and experience) with a great skill to write songs. Creating an album that keeps its secrets for a long time before showing you what is going on, but already attracting the listener from the first time he hears the song. This is an album that will see you hitting the repeat button and sitting back for a full night of music.

Even though this is an electro-album, it is easier to compare it to progressive rock to describe the style. The creative ideology remains, as do the synths, which also take over a lot of work from the guitar. New is that songs become more compact, more assessable in a way. Lyrics do not have the place they have in progrock either and most of the times they are short and to the point.

The album will mainly appeal tol isteners of experimental music, progrock as well as experimental electronics, but might just attract a lot more listeners if they open up for something completely new and worthwile.

artist: Echo US
label: Absolute Probability
details: 2005, 9 tracks