Many people who enjoy progressive rock music sometimes have difficulties with bands having one or two heavy guitar players in their line-up even if a keyboardist, inspired by Keith Emerson, Rick Wakeman or Tony Banks, participates. Most of these bands try to create a blend of two different musical styles. One of the first bands that succeeded in mixing metal and progressive rock into a new musical style - we now call prog metal - was Dream Theater. Their music has been copied many times. If nowadays, a band wants to be accepted in the prog community as a great prog metal band, their sound has to differ from Dream Theater. Some bands tend to sound alike and take the risk to be labeled as Dream Theater- clones. Others integrate too much metal elements dominating their music.
Prymary, a rather new prog metal band from the USA, proved to be able to make that difference on their second album The Tragedy Of Innocence. This album made a great impression on me when I heard it in 2006. The true story about a raped girl combined with the compositions immediately grabbed me by the throat. I was very curious to find out if the band’s latest record The Enemy Inside would have the same effect on me. On this album, Prymary’s transcending their past achievements by creating a collage of stories that are independent and yet united in the themes of self-destruction and dreams unfulfilled. From the line-up of their previous album only drummer Chris Quirarte and guitarist Sean Entrikin remained. However, keyboard player Smiley Sean who had left the band, played all the keyboard parts except for some additional solos on Trial And Tragedy done by new member Neal McQueen. I wondered if the chemistry between the old and new band members would result in a strong release. Well, it did. On the opening track The Enemy Inside, part 1 all musicians show to be excellent on their instruments. This instrumental piece is a real showcase of their talents. Dream Theater eats its heart out! On the second part of The Enemy Inside, we hear the strong voice of new lead singer Jackson Haskett. On part two and part three Prymary plays in a high gear. Thank God, they slow down a bit on part four so we can enjoy a fantastic guitar solo by Sean Entrikin who’s experienced in playing acoustic guitar as well.
Keyboard player Smiley Sean went back to school to pursue a career in film scores, but we still can enjoy his great playing throughout the album. His keyboards dominate on Edge Of Discovery which makes this track one of the most progressive pieces on the album. However, they saved the best for the last track Trials And Tragedy. This 20-minute epic piece shows how competent these musicians are on their instruments. The melodic guitar solos come and go, the bass and drumbeats have clever rhythms and the organ solo is really something to enjoy. The song debouches into a fantastic climax with an outstanding guitar solo.
In spite of all these positive remarks, I still like their previous album better. The music on The Enemy Inside is strong, but it didn’t grab me by the throat like the songs on The Tragedy Of Innocence did. But Prymary still make a difference compared to many other bands in this genre as I mentioned at the start of this review. Therefore, I would recommend this album to everyone who’s into the music of Dream Theater, Kamelot, Andromeda and Pain Of Salvation.
***+ Henri Strik (edited by Peter Willemsen)
Where to buy?
All Rights Reserved Background Magazine 2013