Bigelf’s new release, while not a concept album, focuses on the central element of sci-fi, with space and time travel showing up at every corner.
My first impression when listening to the album was that it’s like Yes was thrown in the world of Mastodon. There are licks and phrases, themes and tunes that could come from a Black Sabbath or Deep Purple record, and honestly I feel it hilarious that there’s a song titled Theater of Dreams (it tastes of Pink Floyd) when Mike Portnoy of Dream Theater fame is behind the drums for the album.
It doesn’t take much to see how much the band loves old rock, be that progressive-psychedelic dreamworld, or more straightforward rock or early metal. It’s all about playing the same good old rock, while focusing on that it doesn’t sound like a general ripoff of the old masters and bringing a presentation that makes it current. I love it how Into The Maelstrom can sound modern while staying faithful to its musical roots.
Then there’s the sci-fi theme to rule them all, the philosophical topics to find them, the mental images of modern man to bring them all and in rock bind them. Listening to the album has inspired me a lot. There are so many ideas in it and so many interesting problems described that a shelf’s worth of books could be written based on them. It gets even better as the lyrics and the music grow together – Bigelf manage to express things in music that would be hard to put into words and vice versa, much better than basically anything I’ve heard before.
I can’t not point out that it was thanks to Alien Frequency that I fell in love with the album at first listen. The broken rhythm playing under the chorus and the topic of the song in general, not to mention the wonderful execution, got me even when the rest of the album took a bit longer to sink in.