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(57:02, Progrock Records)
TRACK LIST: 1. The Enemy Inside-1 4:27 2. The Enemy Inside-2 4:33 3. The Enemy Inside-3 2:45 4. The Enemy Inside-4 4:18 5. The Enemy Inside-5 2:14 6. Inflicted 5:00 7. Disillusion 6:15 8. Edge of Discovery 6:57 9. Trial & Tragedy 20:33 LINEUP: Jackson Haskett – vocals Sean Entrikin – guitar Rob Young – bass Chris Quirarte – drums Smiley Sean – keyboards
Prolusion. The US band PRYMARY was formed back in 2000, and made quite an impact with their self-released debut album in 2003. They were signed by Progrock Records in 2006, with the release of their sophomore effort "The Tragedy of Innocence" following suit. "The Enemy Inside" was issued in November 2009 and is the third venture from this outfit.
Analysis. While intriguing in scope and touching in themes, the second effort from this talented band may have been somewhat overly ambitious, at least the reception their former album got seems to indicate that. Three years down the line the band has experienced a few line-up alterations, sporting a new vocalist and bassist for this latest effort. And while they have replaced the keyboard player in their official line-up as well, former tangents man Smiley Sean is at least very much a part of this album. The stylistic expression explored stays pretty much the same though. Classic progressive metal is still very much the name of the game for this band, and one rather dark and bleak in mood. The guitars dominate the proceedings, with mid-paced riff patterns as the dominating trait but with a wide variety of other expressions added for variation – from gentle wandering themes to harsh, staccato barrages. The organ is almost as central as the synths this time around, and Prymary ventures toward a sound closer to Magic Pie on a few occasions in those sequences where the organ reigns alone in the tangent instrument department. Quirky guitar and drum patterns are central facets of this album and while perhaps not challenging as such they are nice features which do add to the overall impression of this effort. Prymary is pretty good at creating intriguing moods too, and while they arguably could develop some of them a bit further, they master this aspect of the compositions pretty well, what I found lacking on this disc is coherence. Most of the songs came across as fragmented affairs to my ears: too many changes, too many different themes explored and in general too chaotic. At times I felt like they tried compressing four or five different songs into each composition, and frantically visiting all the ideas in as short as time as possible. Abrupt changes and multiple themes explored in each individual creation is a fine art to master, and when perfected the end result can be stunning. Prymary still has developing potential in that department in my opinion. The end result is an album with many good ideas and compelling features, but one that is slightly flawed. Talented but unfulfilled if you like.
Conclusion. "The Enemy Inside" is an album title which indicates that the musical contents are rather dark and bleak, and in this case those indications are pretty accurate. Classic progressive metal with a few nods in the direction of acts like Fates Warning is what's served up here, with a few quirky traits and many shifts in pace, sound and intensity. And while the album may not be among the best overall, those who truly enjoy dark moods and a plethora of changes in their classic progressive metal might find this production rather interesting.
OMB=Olav M Bjornsen: February 6, 2010
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