Semistereo -
Trans Earth Injection

(CD 2017, 50:34, Freia Music THOR35)

The tracks:
  1- A New Tomorrow(5:34)
  2- The Search(10:41)
  3- Loneliness at the Door(5:13)
  4- 35 Special(6:07)
  5- The Storm Behind Your Eyes(4:58)
  6- Your Drama(7:29)
  7- Sin(10:28)

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Semistereo already has 2 EPs and two full albums under their belts and Trans Earth Injection is their debut for Freia Music. Since their previous EP Re Ignite the band has joined forces with vocalist Paul Glandorf ; known from A Day's Work and Alarion. Resulting in a much more coherent and professional overall sound for the band. Also the addition of new bass player Mickeal Schuurman gave the band a more prominent sound in the lower regions. The remaining core of Semistereo, guitarist and keyboard player Martijn Weyburg, guitarist Frank Weijers and drummer Marcel van de Graaf now have the perfect line-up to a bright future and Trans Earth Injection is the first step.

Semistereo plays a fine form of alternative rock, with elements of post rock and progressive rock fused to a fairly recognizable style of their own. During the opener; A New Tomorrow the band seems to be searching this new style and although the music is not a bad start, Semistereo doesn't grab me there. Fine guitars and nice vocal parts, but no cigar yet. The following The Search is a fine melodic track with amazing vocal parts and a dreamy atmosphere, already presented on the previous EP, but with Loneliness At The Door Semistereo totally hits bullseye, Paul's vocals are right on the spot, tasteful and emotional. The guitars working the composition, there for creating the atmosphere and never overly prominent. The instrumental 35 Special, really is a special track, the post rock soundscape is loaded with samples of spoken parts, what is absolutely amazing about this track is the addition of Tomas Cochranes horns. The powerful parts of The Storm Behind Your Eyes and the style of this track remind me of another Dutch band; A Liquid Landscape, a band I highly regard. Semistereo blends those powerful parts with their more smooth melodic parts and creates a wonderful song. During Your Drama, Paul Glandorf 's vocals get some extra dramatics, resulting in a more bombastic kind of post rock composition. The final track Sin is a fine track that lasts over ten minutes and proves the bands growth since the previous album. A very mature track that like the rest of the album is perfectly mixed by Jochem Jacobs, known from his work for Textures.

Where I personally had some issues with the previous albums, Semistereo proves to belong right on top of the Dutch music scene. The addition of the two mentioned new members turned out to be the perfect choice for the band. I guess their addition to the Prog Power Europe Line up for 2017 is a well-deserved one, go check them out.

**** Thomas Rhymer (edited by Tracy van Os van den Abeelen)

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