"Essentially progressive music comes from a personal vision of music. And from a necessity of going through the edges of rock music. Prime Mover accepted some traditional influences in this genre (Dream Theater, Fates Warning, Genesis, Pink Floyd) and mixed them with some gothic influences. You could add Pearl Jam (singer Dennis Nordell sounds a bit like Eddie Vedder), but as a whole the band could be called as a progressive metal band with a neo prog atmosphere. That's due to some very cool keyboard parts (some pre programmed others played by an amazing keyboardist) and guitar lines, not always distorted. Actually the clean parts are the coolest. Guitar player Michael Karlsson could be described as a Jim Matheos disciple, of course with his own characteristics and abilities. Also should be highlighted the great bass lines (Roger Nyman).
Great progressive music does not sound forced, sounds natural as the music of Prime Mover. Best songs are not coincidentally the two longest "Work in The Dirt" and "The Meaning Of Life (Maybe)". This last is 12 mins prog rock epic and has Sebastian Teir on keys. Maybe the band should consider having him as a member. Great player. The only weak point is the song "Caged Party Animal" , which is ok, but does not sound similar to the music we hear on the other songs."
This time I sure got an excellent cd to review, since yours truly is the biggest Rush-fan in Colossus (the Finnish association for progressive music- site web ed.), and I would even be ready to fight for the title!
This band jumps out of the obscurity in Nykarleby, intelligently playing melodic progressive rock. The band also owes their name to Rush, and it is easy to hear from the playing what the boys have been listening while eating their daily porridge. The Alex-guitars, Geddy-leadbassplaying and Neil-time signatures that are heard from time to time are namely the real thing. I even had to check the cover if Toronto's finest possibly guests on the album.
The fact that this is six songs spread over forty minutes tells you something about the music, which is built around the tale of the life of Mr Zingelmann.
The singer has an exciting and really low voice. The drum machine is programmed with as much taste as possible. I fell for it and thought a real person was sitting behind the drums until I read the accompanying letter. Great!
The songs are allowed to develop and build slowly. From time to time the band plays some silent and fragile parts, just to abruptly go back to the complex time signatures and other difficult stuff.
Hint: some songs seem to drag a little, it could pay off to set the drum machine a bit faster and try out what it sounds like, since songs usually have a tendency to get faster once the band masters the compositions.
The mix is perfectly ok, and the sound is good enough.
At least there is no risk of getting bored while listening to this, the album is going into my vechicle to be listened to the next time I sail away on a quick night-time journey into the direction of the constellation of the Swan.
I recommend the album to fans of the style of music that Rush and Dream Theater play. I also think that in time Prime Mover has very good chances of developing into a band that will delve further and further into their own thing, making their influences harder to distinguish. I hope the band finds a good enough neilpeart from somewhere to take care of the drums, if the band finds it necessary. I would like to hear this piece of work played live in some of the Colossus-concerts.
Finnish prog is saved!
Jyrki Ollinen (Colossus 3/99)
From Nykarleby comes Prime Mover, and if you know a little about the works of the Canadian trio Rush you can derive the name from one of their songs. The music style is prog rock, or to be more precise melodic prog rock, which for those who aren't in the know can seem complex and inaccessible at first encounter.
The songs can also seem hopelessly long for the ordinary radiopop listener, the longest of the six tracks counts in at close to twelve minutes. One of the fundamental philosophies of Prime Mover is never to let the listener get bored with what he/she hears.
The singer Nordell has a good voice, but tends to get a bit dragging and monotonous in the long run. The funny thing is that the band doesn't have a real drummer - he is programmed in lack of a real one.
There doesn't seem to be a lack of ideas when it comes to songwriting though, and the album offers everything from metalriffs to synthesizer noodling. A prog band in this league usually always finds its audience sooner or later, and Prime Mover shouldn't be an exception.
Daniel Ainasoja (Vasabladet 5.11 1999)
"Progressive pop. Fortunately it stands out from the usual demo bands of this field with a clearly more controlled approach , and some catchy pop hooks are featured. The songs are of course unbelievably long, due to which the touch of those enjoyable hooks is lost. The band plays nicely and easily. In the best third."
Jukka Junttila (Soundi 9/99)
"Prime Mover posted a message to the ProgHaven board (a Perpetual Motion board), announcing their music's availability on MP3.com. Being always on the lookout for new music, I zipped on over. Prime Mover are closer to progressive rock than to progressive metal - a bit harder edged than neo-progressive, more melodic than a lot of metal. If there's a drawback, its that the vocals are very understated (in this, they are a bit like Ezra Winston). But, the vocalist has a great sounding voice, rich, deep, smooth, warm. This is good stuff, and I'll be checking them out further.
Stephanie Sollow, Progressive World
"So kann man sich täuschen. Da meint man wieder mal eine neue unbekannte Band entdeckt zu haben, lädt sich deren Titel sogar noch auf den heimischen Rechner und meint, dass dieser doch nicht so schlecht klingt und dann so etwas! Entweder ist beim Herunterladen etwas falsch gegangen oder es steht langsam mal ein Besuch beim Ohrenarzt an. Dass, was das finnische Trio Prime Mover, trotz, ass man sich bei einem Song von Rush als Bandname bedient hat, auf die Beine gestellt hat, ist wirklich nur noch mit Worten wie grausam und furchtbar adäquat beschrieben. Drumcomputer - Schwamm drüber, lascher, emotionsloser Gesang - abgehakt, selten klang melodische Neo Prog so synthetisch, blutleer, nur noch als Karikatur seiner selbst. Der Musik fehlt jede Dynamik, den Arrangements der rechte Pfiff, selbst die Melodien zerfallen nur noch als aufgeweichte Versionen leidenschaftsloser Tonfolgen in sich selbst zusammen. Angedeutete Stilvielfalt - mal soll ein Solo etwas jazzig sein, dann gibt es rabaukenhafte Prog Metal Passagen aus der untersten Schublade mit Death Metal Gegrunze - endet in aufgesetzter Peinlichkeit. Diese Platte dokumentiert den Ruin gut gemeinter Absichten. Da hilft nur noch eins: üben, üben, üben.Diese Platte dokumentiert den Ruin gut gemeinter Absichten."
"So you can
be fooled by yourself. You think you found a new unknown band, download
their song on your computer and think, that it doesn't sound so bad, and
then this! Either something went wrong with the download or I have to
visit my eardoctor. That what the finnish trio Prime Mover, although their
bandname refers to a Rush song, has made is only with words as awful and
dreadful describable. Drumcomputer - doesn't matter, emotionless singing
- doesn't matter, seldom heard melodic Neo Prog that sounds so synthetic,
lifeless, just a caricature to itself. The Music is missing any dynamic,
the arrangements are trickless, the melodies sound like softened versions
of a passionless succession of tones. Some plurality of styles - here
a jazzy solo, there a brutal Prog Metal-passage from the bottom of taste
with death metal grunts - ends in painfulness. Just one thing can help:
practicing, practicing, practicing.This record demonstrates the ruin of
well meant intentions."
Kristian Selm (Progressive Newsletter, 1/2000) , kindly translated to English by Christian Rode