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Monday, April 7, 2008

Bushwhack

Bushwhack (Bushwhack Entertainment)

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Dream Theater and Porcupine Tree rank among the most common reference points for progressive metal in the early 21st century. Serious and technical, yet still melodic, both veteran bands have proven that complex music can find an audience—if not always mainstream acceptance.

Now along comes Bushwhack, an all-instrumental quartet of college students from New Haven, Conn., that picks and chooses influences from Dream Theater, Porcupine Tree and other modern progressive -and melodic-metal bands to forge their own clearheaded sound. Prog geeks at heart, these lads even list all of their gear next to their names and faces in Bushwhack’s booklet.

While a vocalist could have added to thrilling tunes such as the alternately chugging and sweeping epic “Sea of Tranquility,” the Middle-Eastern pulse of “Menace” and the emotional interplay of “The Greatest Wall,” the wrong voice could have destroyed the multiple nuances at play here.