Porcupine Tree, Dream Theatre, Queensryche
Having formed in 2001, Solstice Coil are veterans to the progressive rock scene. Their latest album Commute dances between progressive rock and progressive metal flowing with heavy riffs to spacious synthesizer licks and symphonic guitars. The five piece band hails from Israel and are a passionate group. Lead singer Shir Deutch occasionally will sound like a mix of Geiff Tate (Queensryche) meets Steve Wilson (Porcupine Tree). His accent is quite prominent as a listener we yearn to hear him sing in his native tongue. Nonetheless Shir demonstrates a pretty wide range. At time we found his vocals a bit too exposed and off-key.
1. New Eyes
2. Forget You Ever Saw Us
3. Shuffle The Cards
4. Her Silent Silhouette
6. The Bargain
7. Acid Bath
9. An Oldie (But Your Kids are Gonna Love it)
Below we have included a brief summary of our favorite three tracks off the album:
"Acid Bath" clearly the best track off the album. Perhaps the fact that the song title is one of our favorite bands may have something to do with this. We enjoy the rich bass-line underpinning here. The song has a variety of choruses that ebb and flow well. A bit of a darker edge to this track, but we still have difficulty believing the dark tilt once Shir starts to rant.
"Anywhere" a nice two minute acoustic guitar solo.
"Nowhere" the closing track actually does go somewhere (unlike most of the other tracks). A beautiful piano interlude resonates throughout. The track has a Porcupine Tree appeal to it and develops well into its pinnacle of sound.
Shir Deutch (Vocals/Guitar)
Opher Vishnia (Guitar/Vocals)
Shai Yallin (Keyboards/Vocals)
Mihael Galperin (Bass)
Yakir Fitousi (Drums)
Ultimately Commute falls flat in a big way. Lyrically it is painful to listen to and Shir's vocals unfortunately teeter on unlistenable during various moments of the album. We had difficulty getting through complete listens in one sitting. At times the over-melodramatic and weeping guitars become too much, coupled with Shir's whining at times are a difficult combo to swallow. For those giving Solstice Coil a listen, we strongly recommend you give their 2011 release Natural Causes a few rotations. It is much less forced progressive rock and dances a bit more on the metal side of things. Add a few more notches on the dial for this earlier release. 7/15/2015
Standout Tracks: Acid Bath