Incubate is the second album of the Polish quintet Qube. Iím not familiar with their previous album Shapes, so Iím not going to say anything about progression, changes or similarities, but after listening to Incubate, Iím very curious to its predecessor anyway. Since 2005, Qube has a stable line-up, being Daniel Gielza (vocals), Tomasz Otto (guitar), Kamil Wisniewski (guitar), Piotr Torbicz (bass) and Pawel Gajewski (drums). Their debut album Shapes was released in 2006 and had taken only three weeks of recording. The new album has been released in cooperation with Electrum Production. Because there are no keyboards on this album, it will be hard to file this band under progressive rock or prog metal. I would say their style is powerful nu-metal with progressive and even hard-core elements.
While listening to Nothing, the albumís opener, the resemblance with Godsmack is striking, because the vocals of Daniel Gielza come pretty close to Godsmackís Sully Erna. The grunts, the shouting and even the softer parts sung in a normal way have that typical Godsmack-feel and Godsmackís not the worst band to be compared with. Heavy drumming and fantastic sounding guitars on Mantis make you shake your head, but Qube proves to be more than just a nu-metal band. All instruments are played excellently; the individual parts are played very tight with some additional musical ideas that lift the music above the nu-metal level. In Obsession it even seems to get heavier than the previous songs. It opens with Sully Erna-like vocals, turning into double bass drums, massive guitars and vocals that can compete with Slipknotís best. This is a great aggressive epic with many mood changes, outstanding guitar solos and marvelous drumming. In The Name Of God opens as a kind of ballad including an emotional guitar solo. The vocals have some influences of System Of A Down. Although this song contains some heavier parts, itís the most relaxed piece on Incubate. Blame has a nice and heavy opening as well. After a minute or three the vocals kick in; very relaxed and emotional and in the vein of A Perfect Circle. This epic with lots of fantastic guitar parts is one of the albumís highlights. The following songs Way To Nowhere, is a powerful song full of breaks, emotional vocals, grunts, shouting and a fantastic groove. This piece certainly is another highlight. The final song is the bonus Before The Light, a short single version of Nothing, the first song on the album. I hope this song will get some air play because Qube deserve it.
While listening to this album, I have to give these guys some credits for the production of this CD. Every instrument has a crystal clear sound; itís a pleasure to listen to. Qube have done an outstanding job composing great energetic songs, but again: production wise this is a great album as well.
**** Pedro Bekkers (edited by Peter Willemsen)
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