From the first sonar-like ping to the last note, Third Quadrant’s 2016 album re:generator holds your attention, with a vocal style not dissimilar to Paul McCartney (at his best), and the modern prog interpretation of Dave Kerzner (with or without Sound of Contact). It has depth, very Pink Floyd in style in some of the instrumentation. Pink with Wings, does that mean pigs can fly?
Only 6 tracks but more than a pleasant listen, maybe not as involving over multiple listens upon purchase but it is a damned fine piece of work. The Floydian guitar sound is not a distraction, the keyboards creating that enveloping duvet of comfort sound; it is a nice diversion. As with the majority of bands that produce sounds that travel through the ether to mine ears, the musicianship is of the highest quality.
It is not a get up and boogie album, it’s a glass of Rioja, and perhaps some headphones, close your eyes and relax. But from that perspective it really is great. Clocking in at around 45 minutes, it fits the traditional two sides of vinyl design, but in that space, nothing has been wasted. Even with the delights of a good sound system, you do find yourself wondering how the perceived warmth of vinyl would make it sound.
When it drifts from Floyd central, harmonies, guitars and bass lines have Yes-like hints; Chris Squire would be proud of the bass on page:217. On this particular track the PF alter ego I find present too, in the shape of Alan Parsons. All this makes it sound like a pastiche of music past; it isn’t, there is more than enough originality to make it shine in its own right. The convoluted lyrics you would expect of Jon Anderson are there, though that in itself may just be the nature of a concept album. I think – although don’t they all – that the album seeks to address the human condition.
Third Quadrant have swallowed a lot of prog influences, but what will they be like live? A U.K. progressive rock band formed in the early 1980s and re-activated in 2012, this is an album that deserves a listen. Well, several actually. Yes it shows signs of the 80s but, in current terms, the use of soundscapes and narrative do not make it far removed from the music produced by Public Service Broadcasting; it is clever, it grows with repeated listens and has a cinematic quality. From bell:106 to 3:Arth it is rather beautiful. In a world of rush (small ‘R’), it has a calm and relatively peaceful feel. I’m inclined to reference the track titles, 62: miles being the distance from ground to space, I believe. The artwork is by Chris Hare, subtle and understated, but making me wonder if there is a connection between graphic artists and drummers?
For those quiet moments, it has my thumbs up!
01. bell:106 (6:54)
02. carbon:14 (6:48)
03. 62:miles (4:27)
04. page:217 (6:02)
05. deadstar:1 (19:03)
06. 3:arth (3:37)
Total Time – 46:51
Chris Dunn – Keyboards, Vocals
Chris Hare – Drums
Simeon Manners – Guitar
David Forster – Bass, Vocals
Shaun Bailey – Guitar
Clive Mollart – Keyboards
Country of Origin: U.K.
Date of Release: 17th March 2016