Something a little different. Hope you don’t despise me for all eternity because of my temerity.

For these next few moments
You must excuse me
And allow this brazen self-indulgency
For, all my sins
I will endeavour
To both encapsulate
And give you pleasure
In a way,
That now must be plain of showing
And write this review,
In the form of a Poem.

For this album,
By Polyphia
Entitled Muse
Matched as a mirror to my intent
Was recorded,
Without a breath of vocal spent
So in an effort to return,
In equal measure
The entertainment they gave,
Whilst listening at my leisure
I’ll allow the muse of Calliope,
To overtake my pen and Me
And embrace their Grace and Dexterity
To record for bluff and wan posterity
My thoughts on their,
Precocious musicality.

These four Lone Stars,
From Texas
Have in Excess,
All of the qualities
One needs for Success
They’re Talented, Attractive, Ambitious and Driven
You could award Them fame now,
For its almost a given.
And Their Album,
9 tracks long,
Sparkles and Fizzes
But for a few significant Misses.

But first the Positives
Of which there are plenty,
More than the average debut album,
That’s sent me.
Their style is Polished;
Funky, Progressive;
Positive, Upbeat
And never depressive.
Multiple Tempos and Metres
Woven into every song;
In a way, they sound like
(a more direct)

Choppy and Concordant;
Resonating with ability
Solos Spiralled
Riffs aplenty
And Effortless Delivery

But, although this
I might say,
Its the guitar that always,
Leads the way.

Such is the focus
On 6 string trickery
The Bass’s role becomes
Just Auxiliary
And that is,
A considerable shame;
Because Low End, should
Never be just a frame
And be allowed on occasion
To stand Proud
And shout Loud
Moving lucidly through the maze
Of the Prosaic Luthiered haze
Not to delight,
Or to amaze
But just to prove
To those outside;
That Here’s a Band
Functioning with Pride
In all of its Units;
Rather than it seems:
Like a Fathom minus 2 Cubits.

This may seem a laboured metaphor
(And you’d be right)
But I’ll implore, You
To listen to my trite proposal:
That talent doesn’t give you success,
Nor Greatness inform you talent to impress
But when you’re in a team,
You use all the skills at your disposal.

Or if you’d like this,
Expressed much more simply,
The Bass Rarely, if ever
Takes on and advances Melody.
Leaving it as simple stanchion
To the guitars exuberant pretension.

But this all said,
No matter how true it is
This record is powerfully felicitous
Ebullient and joyous with Joie De Vie
Plain for the Listeners
(Synesthetically), To See

They celebrate Effervescently
With arpeggiated perspicacity;
Displaying this Verve
With pulses Low
and Stahlen Nerve.

But regardless of their Digital ability
They overuse a Digital facility
Trilling with an effect
More than I’d expect
Such a group of talented players
Would want to.

I must not make You believe
That this album does not achieve
It surges forward,
With proggy positivity
Melodic structure enlivened
With immense ingenuity
But despite their sonic purity
They lack a soupçon of maturity
Which (given their age) is reasonable
But its entirely feasible
That you think my opinion Treasonable
But I’ll stick by it
And state without wanton Levity
That the album lacks sincerity
That for all their Guitar Acrobatics,
Which are Impressive and Dramatic
They’ve not quite gained the Poise
To make the Most of all their Toys

But if You like Prog
Of a very Modern bent
This Album will seem,
To you, Heaven Sent

However while it has
All the shred You like
And the Songs are filled
With myriad ideas
Ringing with single focus thoughts
And multiple Audacious Notions
Polyphia have all the Wizardry
But They’ve not yet the Emotions

– John Whitmore


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