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Pattern-Seeking Animals: S/T
Click for Larger Image - Pattern-Seeking Animal Art Work

Pattern-Seeking Animals: S/T

Melodic Progressive Rock

Behind many great bands there lies musical contributors you often do not see. The proverbial man behind the curtain as it were. Songwriter, producer, and keyboard player John Boegehold is one of those people. Over the years, he's been a frequent song contributor to Spock's Beard. A short year past, Boegehold was working on new material of his own, eventually developing enough new songs for a complete album. All he needed was the proper band to bring his music to the masses, and Pattern-Seeking Animals was created. The like minded fellows in the band are friends from Spock's Beard: Ted Leonard, Jimmy Keegan and Dave Meros.

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Pattern-Seeking Animals

As you can expect, immediate musical references to Spock's Beard will occur. They did for me. Nevertheless, Boegehold knows the patterns and parts that make up melodic progressive rock and attempted to work from a fresh canvas with inventive ideas. He has succeeded quite well. Some characteristic of prog rock are necessary and immediately recognizable across the album.

One is the necessity of an intriguing arrangement wrapped in volumes of melody, harmony, and groove. It's factor easily upset in the wrong hands, but you will find many of the longer compositions richly diverse yet also easily accessible for listening. Additionally, solid melodic prog allows all players and instruments to contribute to the power of the arrangement without shattering its cohesiveness. This is clearly heard throughout this album, from synths to bass and drum lines to guitar work, every player get his turn rise and shine. Of particular importance in this mix is Ted Leonard. As opposed to his role in Spock's Beard, he is both lead vocalist and lead guitarist. Damn. He's a fine guitar player in his own right. Additionally, Boegehold steps up to be a true band member, playing all synth parts.

With that paragraph, I basically gave away the context and character of the songs of Pattern Seeking Animals. But being addicted to some verbosity, let's add a few more notes about the tunes. The depth and expansive of both arrangements and player contributions are self-evident within No Burden Left To Carry, Stars Along The Way, and Orphans Of The Universe. In these songs the musicians have room to stretch yet without the usual prog wonkery that can disrupt the pleasure and importance of song hooks from melody and refrains. Alternatively, in certain shorter songs, Boegehold seems intent upon offering a simply catchy melodic rock song. Songs such as These Are My Things, We Write The Ghost Stories, and Now One Ever Died And Made Me King turn much more upon melody, rhythm, groove, and a tasty chorus rather than traditional prog complexity. Ergo, lightly they disrupt the prevailing prog omniverse.

Simply, Pattern-Seeking Animals debut album is a fine one, equally creative, intriguing, and entertaining melodic progressive rock. Don't miss it. Quite recommended.

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The Bottom Line

Simply, Pattern-Seeking Animals debut album is a fine one, equally creative, intriguing, and entertaining melodic progressive rock. Don't miss it. Quite recommended.

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