The latest album from Welsh proggers Godsticks showed some changes in the band, as for the first time it sees them as a four-piece with drummer Tom Price, who replaces Steve Roberts (who had been in the band since 2010) and additional guitarist Gavin Bushell, which allows the band to be more aggressive and punchy than previously. They join Darran Charles (who also performed on The Pineapple Thief’s 2016 hit album ‘Your Wilderness’ and is part of their live touring band) who provides vocals and guitar along with bassist Dan Nelson. Lyrically, ‘Faced With Rage’ explores the theme of people dealing with emotional conflict in different scenarios, and who have a powerful desire to change their behavior or situation.
These guys are very much in the modern field of progressive rock, taking influences from Tool, Porcupine Tree, System of a Down, Radiohead and the aforementioned The Pineapple Thief and Bruce Soord. Actually, unless they’re careful they might even find themselves becoming beloved of the mainstream media as they are far more angular and indie rocky than one would normally think of with a prog act. With their approach and layering wall of sound there are also times when they come across as a more vibrant and energized Muse, and when listening to this I often find myself having closed my eyes and am just moving to the beat, not something one would normally expect from prog! I know I am late to the piece, as the album has already been out six months, but I am incredibly glad that I have finally heard it, as it is well worth investigating by anyone who has ever bemoaned that too many prog acts sound like Genesis.
by Kev Rowland