Bent Knee

Mojo (UK) - - Filter Albums -

HHH Land An­i­mal IN­SIDE OUT. CD/DL/LP Bos­ton quin­tet’s pro­gres­sive sound and vi­sion. Global warm­ing, po­larised so­ci­eties, racism and “tech­nol­o­gy­medi­ated re­la­tion­ships” are atyp­i­cal bed­fel­lows for pro­gres­sive rock. Bent Knee clearly have no truck with the trad fix­tures of to­po­graphic oceans or Tarkuses. Not that Land An­i­mal is au­di­bly driven by polemic (Ter­ror Bird is as de­scrip­tive as it gets), and though singer/key­boardist Courtney Swain has no prob­lem with dic­tion, her words are mostly ob­scured by the eu­phoric dizzi­ness of the mu­sic. Early-’80s model King Crim­son are one prob­a­ble in­flu­ence, bound­ary-free artrock trick­i­ness shorn of sym­phonic or rock stodge, with di­a­met­ric an­gu­lar­ity and Ben Levin’s mad-prof riff­ing. Swain keeps pace; she’s par­tic­u­larly fond of the shift from a sul­try whis­per to a hard-rock scream, which al­to­gether makes Boxes an un­canny, un­ex­pect­edly placid and straight­for­ward fi­nale. If prog rock has a fu­ture then Bent Knee are surely it. Martin As­ton

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