Dysrhythmia – Psychic Maps
Colin Marston has brought his secret (and admittedly best) secret weapon to the forefront; Dysrhythmia. After the seemingly unexpected explosion of popularity towards then small time project Behold… The Arctopus, Marston leant his visionary talent towards Dysrhythmia’s previous offering Barriers And Passages. Abandoning the monstrous warr guitar and going for a drawling perfunctory bass, his influence is felt more than ever with Psychic Maps.
Despite hearing traces of Marston’s other quirks (there is Krallice-ish black metal nihilism in “Reactionary”) this is foremost an ensemble project. While Marston’s tenure demands respect, the tamer and nimble guitar lines oozing from Kevin Huffnagel’s axe mix with the basswork to build contrapuntal prog symphonies. Jeff Eber clearly influenced by Charlie Zeleny’s drum patterns, but his jazzy blast beats and layered ghost notes are a step up from those of sister album Skullgrid.
Note my usage of prog; Psychic Maps is first a fusion album, and a metal one second. Audience, King Crimson, and Mick Barr all seem to have a stake in this more aggressive version of acid jazz, and Dysrhythmia would prove to be the most formidable of current day proggers. This is far more deserving of the progressive metal mantle than bands like Obscura and Veil Of Maya would have you believe.
Each track brings a different flavour, establishes it’s premise, and takes full advantage of it’s unique intertwining melodies. Any atmosphere and mood this album delivers (which in the opinion of the writer, is monumental) is the effortless by product of the riffs themselves. It is a listen that is easy to grasp, interpret, yet always has a meandering subtext of complexity. Despite it’s overwhelming darkness (yes, it is darker and heavier than Krallice) it is a satisfying exchange. From start to finish, one feels as if they had taken a vitamin, making it impossible to deny how audibly nutritious this record is.