Instrumental (adj) – A Series of Disagreements (2015)


Sydney 3 piece ‘Instrumental (adj)’ have dropped an intense slab of prog in the form of a three track album called ‘A Series of Disagreements’ which you can buy or download (pay what you want) from the lovely folks at Art As Catharsis.

If you wish Between the Buried and Me’s ‘Colours’ had an additional 3 songs.. then you will love this. If you listened to Animals As Leaders and thought.. man I wish there was something like this in Australia.. then you’re going to love this.

This is a standout release amongst a pretty great year of releases. It’s technical, progressive and instrumental music that weaves, noodles and riffs all over the place resulting in comments such as ‘okay what the hell was that’ and ‘oh man.. im quitting guitar now’.

The opening/title track gets started with a clean guitar stabbing jazz chords with some very busy and impressive bass work that has an almost jazz/funk feel to it. The drums just spazz out all over the place and it’s clear from the first 40 seconds that this will be a hell of a ride.

If the jazzy/math sounds put you off a bit (like it did for me at first) just stick with it. Shit gets real at the 1 minute mark with these frantic blasts and discordant runs up the guitars neck. It’s utterly jarring, surprising and immediately caught my curiosity. At 2 ½ minutes in and they’ve gone full retard with proggy metal riffs and off time drums jolting and pushing the 1’s and 4’s to their limits. It comes full circle with the reintroduction of the stabby/jazz feel from the start of the song and winds down with a chilled outro that settles the listener into a nice lull.

The other two piece’s lend themselves to more metal styles. There’s lead sections, blasts and frantic drumming upping the pace in parts, heavier guitar sounds that carry more weight and dread.. plus a delightful envelop filter effect that pops in and out of sections which really stands out and could very well be the first time I’ve heard an effect like that used and made to sound relevant and appropriate.

Production is spot on. Ultra tight, very clear and un-cluttered (despite the busy nature of the material). You’ll hear everything crystal clear and it sounds damn fine up loud so I encourage showing it your neighbours.. you know.. through your rumbling windows and walls!

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