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PROGFREAKS |by Marcelo Silveyra

Ratings: Marcelo 4/5, Javier 4/5, Louis 4/5.

Primordially, progressive rock artists strive for ambitious music. Successful bands are generally associated with complexity, skill, and innovation, always dwelling on dangerous ground. Still, most of these bands find a certain degree of accessibility between the listener and themselves, trying to express their ideas and feelings through the music. For Circles End it's just a matter of time before this description truly represents them.

Most outfits take some time in developing and polishing up their act, but contradictory to the main rule, Circles End achieves most of these aforementioned features on its debut record, offering a heavy dose of well-thought arrangements and ideas in an accessible layout. Although no immediate band comes to mind to compare the band to, it does tend to have a sound similar to Echolyn, with a slight Anekdoten or Crimson influence, primarily on songs such as the mood-twisting, improvisational track "Soliloquy" or the amazing fractioned piece "Sleepless," which portrays the band's broad musical capability that range from mellow, grandiose vocal-driven melodies to funky, groovy and psychedelic instrumental passages.

In Dialogue With The Moon is far apart from any of its peers, with an inherently mature songwriting approach and structure rarely seen on a band's debut release. With a mix between fusion jazz and psychedelic and mainstream rock, the band drives smoothly through every piece with wonderfully intricate rhythm patterns and an inborn sense of melody, and furthermost, they balance all of these elements in an extremely progressive and yet listener-friendly package. "The Fine Line" exemplifies the mastery of these musicians in creating complex arrangements in an accessible way, granting main focus to rhythm, melody and powerful grooves. Twists and unexpected turns, as well as jazzy feels and funky grooves make up for an interesting and exciting way of approaching basic song-oriented mainstream rock ideas, distancing the focus from the common musical direction envisioned by other bands.

Lastly, this is no masterpiece, but still a very worthy candidate. In Dialogue With The Moon certainly is a great debut release and clearly lays out what Circles End is capable of. The beauty of it is the creativeness and innovation behind the entire album, stating that Circles End is indeed a unique band with an immense potential behind it. Let's see what fate has in store for them...