A couple of months or so short of two years after the release of The Owl EP, British instrumental progressive rock trio The Parallax Method release its companion piece, The Squid. Continuing the theme of “space and a perpetual battle between the owl and the squid to convey their unique sub-genre of modern prog” started with the first EP, its successor takes ears on another groove infested, colourfully inventive, and technically captivating shuffle sure to have the body enthralled and twisted as eagerly as the imagination.
Emerging from the ashes of hard rock band Isolysis, The Parallax Method stepped forward in 2014 with old friends in guitarist Danny Beardsley, drummer Dave Wright, and bassist Daniel Hayes. Drawing on the inspiration of bands such as Between The Buried And Me, Tesseract, and Karnivool, they nurtured and bred the compelling tapestry of sound to grace debut EP The Owl in 2015. Its acclaimed release and complex yet easily accessible escapade announced The Parallax Method as an exciting prospect to watch and an adventure to devour. The departure of Hayes post the recording of the EP saw Ben Edis (Spirytus/Breed77) come in and complete a line-up even creatively bolder and mischievous within The Squid.
Let’s Get Kraken gets things underway; its title the first hint to the knavish and spirited escapade within song and EP. From within a busily engaged crowd, a swing guided bassline joins the jazzy flirtation of guitar, beats skipping along with them. It is an inviting collusion soon luring hips and feet into the waiting net of enterprise; every initial attribute and lure soon infested with lustful intensity and creative boisterousness as things get funky with the arrival of Donald Sutherland And His Magnificent Mane. Evolving from its predecessor, grooves captivate as hooks ensnare, all the while Wright’s swings landing with real bite and snap as the track gets down to laying a web of intrigue and beguilingly evolving adventure. There is chunkiness to its body which sparks the appetite as much as its gentler wanderings across the senses, all making for a compelling incitement for body and imagination.
Its final vocal sigh sparks the similarly spirited and energetic shuffle of You Gotta Be Squiddin’ Me’, the track slyly entwining ears with seductive grooves with a whiff of predacious devilment as around them melodic interplay blossoms its own beguiling enticements. Electronic spicing only adds to the tenacious and imaginative touch of song and guitar, Beardsley weaving another rascality of sound through his strings as Edis’ bass prowls with its own coltish instincts and intent. Fuelled by mood swings of enterprise, the track at times heavy and rapacious whilst in other moments crafty and sprightly, it has body and thoughts leaping and inventing respectively.
As too does the creatively athletic and kinetically energetic canter of Owl Pacino Vs Mega Mango; a piece of music which can feel in certain moments like a stand-off between battling textures and attitudes but at other times a heated yet respectful collusion of both sides; though it is the aggressive instincts of each side which drive the outstanding track.
Its funk lined finale flows into the epic melodic epilogue and dynamically entrancing theatre of I Squid You Farewell (Owl Be Seeing You). The final track is a drama of sound and texture; an imagination woven and guided frolic of the rich craft and strikingly inventive versatility of all three musicians as they lead the listener on a fruitful gest as much of their own as the band’s making.
Every listen of The Squid brings escalating joy and adventure as new twists in the imagination flare up as fresh nuances and layers are discovered. The EP is a stunning move on from The Owl yet still works perfectly with its earlier companion; the full glory of The Parallax Method ingenuity and creative fertility best served with both releases played back to back and given full attention of ears and mind.
The Squid is out now digitally and on CD @ http://theparallaxmethod.bigcartel.com/
Pete RingMaster 16/05/2017
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