Exposé Online banner

Bob Katsionis — Prognosis & Synopsis
(Symmetric Records, 2018, CD)

by Jon Davis, Published 2018-06-16

Prognosis & Synopsis Cover art

Babis “Bob” Katsionis plays guitar and keyboards in such bands as Firewind, Revolution Renaissance, Outloud, and Serious Black, but I’m not knowledgeable on the Greek metal scene, so none of those names means anything to me. Prognosis & Synopsis is his fifth solo album, the first I’ve heard. Progressive metal is a style I’m not generally fond of, though I firmly believe that good music can flourish anywhere, even in Greek prog-metal. On the whole, I think Katsionis manages to rise above the conventions of the genre to produce an enjoyable listen that transcends boundaries. While most of the tracks feature rhythm guitar parts that would be at home on virtually any metal album of the last 25 years, there are lots of touches that rise above cliché, whether it’s unexpected harmonic shifts, tasty synthesizer sequencing, or just a nice melody played expressively on the lead guitar. Katsionis counts among his influences such artists as Jean-Michel Jarre and Vangelis, which shows in some of the more keyboard heavy tracks. There are some symphonic touches, as on “Dark Matter,” which is my favorite of the set. It starts with a sequenced arpeggio on a synthesizer, sneaks in electronic percussion, and gradually builds up to pseudo-orchestral levels, with timpani and strings. Katsionis manages to pull this off without dipping into overblown pretentiousness. Less successful, to my ears at least, are the more standard pieces, where pummelling kick drum backs endless streams of fast-picked rhythm guitar notes and lead parts that run up and down the fretboard at breakneck speed. There are thousands of guitarists around the world who can do that, and by itself it’s no longer impressive without serving a musical purpose within the composition. On Prognosis & Synopsis it goes both ways, though on the whole, I think the keyboard work is more distinctive than the guitar. For listeners who like instrumental progressive rock and don’t mind a little metal in the mix, Katsionis is worth checking out.


Filed under: New releases, 2018 releases

Related artist(s): Babis (Bob) Katsionis

More info
http://bobkatsionis.bandcamp.com/album/prognosis-synopsis

Latest news

2019-03-20
Freedom to Spend Unearths June Chikuma's Archives – Jun (June) Chikuma is well known for her video game and anime soundtracks, but she also released an album of experimental electronic music back in 1986 called Divertimento where she indulged the kind of spontaneity that wouldn't work in a soundtrack. RVNG Int'l label Freedom to Spend is bringing this overlooked item to broader attention with a deluxe reissue. » Read more

2019-03-03
Seaprog 2019 Lineup Almost Complete – The Seaprog festival in Seattle is scheduled for June 7-9 this year, and they've announced their lineup of performers. The revitalized Trettioåriga Kriget will cap Friday night, perennial favorites Marbin are on Saturday, and District 97 will finish off the fest on Sunday night. In support, they've booked a stellar variety of artists from the Northwest and around the world, including EchoTest, Markus Reuter and Trey Gunn, and the live debut of the amazing Troot project. » Read more

2019-02-21
You Can Be Part of an Ambient Electronic Project – The Gesture of History is a new electronic project put together by Sam Rosenthal of Black Tape for a Blue Girl, Steve Roach, and violist Sam Shadow. The music started as an instrumental track Rosenthal was working on for a Black Tape album, but took on a life of its own and demanded further enhancements. The majority of the funds raised will go to manufacturing costs for LP and CD editions, as well as other items as detailed on the Kickstarter page. » Read more

2019-01-31
Keyboardist Ingo Bischof R.I.P. – Keyboard player Ingo Bischof, best known as the longtime keyboard player of German band Kraan, passed away on January 29th, 2019. Bischof was born January 2, 1951 in Berlin-Kreuzberg and joined Kraan in 1975. » Read more

2019-01-11
Jazz Composer Mark Lomax, II Releases Epic 12CD Set – In addition to being a fine jazz drummer, Dr. Mark Lomax, II is a composer in residence at Ohio State University, where he has been very busy on the compositional front. The year 2019 is the 400th anniversary of the arrival of the first ship bringing African slaves to North America, and in commemoration of this, Lomax has produced 400: An Afrikan Epic, a 12 volume set of CDs featuring a variety of different musical ensembles. » Read more


Previously in Exposé...

Mani Neumeier & Peter Hollinger - Meet the the Demons of Bali – Wooaah, wait a minute, hold the phone, and just a cottin' pickin'... Mani has really done something different here! Some may remember the Privat CD reviewed last time. There, he took on every...  (1999) » Read more



Listen & discover



Print issues