stewing over this album for a few months now, as I honestly was
having trouble deciding how I feel about it. Perfect Beings is
made up of a group of experienced players that haven't always
played in the progressive genre. Yet, they all came together to
create something that they hoped would make a splash.
Judging by the amount of fanfare I've seen thus far, people are
liking it. I'm not so sure I can fully embrace it myself,
Perfect Beings tries to bring new sounds to the table. The band
plays a mellow prog rock, full of atmosphere, space, and some
occasion "out there" segments, usually having to do with
vocalist Ryan Hurtgen's vocal exercises. The band plays
competently enough, though fans looking for a technical album
should look elsewhere. Mood, flow, and whimsy seem to be the
driving factors here, as the band displays a hefty indie
influence, as can be seen from the very first track, "Canyon
Hill". I also hear quite a bit of Muse in the melodies, but not
so much that it distracts.
The band features an excellent bass player in Chris Tristram. He
is easily my favorite part of the album, as his bass lines are
funky and subtle at the same time. Keyboardist Jesse Nason is
also a standout with his strong keyboard tones. He literally
steals the show every time he plays.
The band, overall, are excellent players, yet I feel that the
composition could have been more powerful. There are several
good songs, such as "Canyon Hill", the moody "Bees and Wasps",
the fantastically spacey "Fictions", and others. However, I
don't really think any of the songs approach a memorability that
will have me returning to this self-titled album very often.
Everything is all well and good, but there nothing that really
wows me. The band certainly has their own sound, especially the
vocal lines used. Yet, there's nothing that can be described as
unique or all that different.
Perfect Beings, then, have crafted a good album that mixes prog
rock and indie attitude rather well. It is, however, only the
first step. Much of the music comes off as mellow in the
composition department, almost unfinished or having too much
space. Yet, for what it is, the album (especially the artwork)
is beautiful and worth hearing for any serious prog fan. I
imagine that many will love the subtlety of the album, and it
may yet capture my heart.