Exposé Online banner

Huis — Despite Guardian Angels
(Unicorn Digital UNCR5088, 2014, CD)

by Jon Davis, Published 2014-06-13

Despite Guardian Angels Cover artHuis brings to mind once again the question of "originality" as a virtue in music. I put the word in quotes because, while it may seem to be an ordinary word with a meaning that's understood, in this context at least there are several interpretations. In the sense that no one has ever put these notes together with these words, Despite Guardian Angels is original; stylistically... not so much. Huis is solidly in the classic prog camp, leaning towards neo-prog. You'll hear bits reminiscent of Genesis, Camel, and any number of the later generation like Marillion and IQ. But stylistic innovation isn't required for enjoyment, and it's better to judge the band on the other merits of their work. They are skilled players, and the music has both intellectual and emotional appeal. Singer Sylvain Descôteaux in particular gets high marks, with a warm and attractive voice. Keyboards, both vintage and modern, dominate, with solid contributions on guitar and in the rhythm section. There are quiet meditative passages providing room to breathe in between the louder numbers, and a good sense of flow and dynamics throughout. With my general preference toward the avant side of prog, melodic bands like Huis have an uphill battle to win me over, and while my initial impression was not so positive, they won me over in the end. In the future I hope they move beyond the occasional overtly Genesis-like sounds, but this is an excellent start, and deserves a place with fans of this side of the prog spectrum.

Filed under: New releases, 2014 releases

Related artist(s): Huis

More info
http://www.huisband.com

Latest news

2020-05-15
Phil May of The Pretty Things RIP – We were saddened to learn that Phil May, lead singer and founding member of The Pretty Things, has died at the age of 75. The band's 1968 album S.F. Sorrow is one of the enduring classics of the psychedelic era, and the group existed in various forms until finally retiring in 2018. » Read more

2020-05-14
Jorge Santana RIP – Jorge Santana, noted guitarist, leader of the band Malo and brother to Carlos Santan, died on May 14 at the age of 68. Jorge and Carlos worked together on a number of occasions, though Jorge's career was centered around Malo, solo work, and with Fania All-Stars. » Read more

2020-05-06
Florian Schneider RIP – Florian Schneider, one of the founders of the pioneering electronic group Kraftwerk, has died at the age of 73. Co-founder Ralf Hütter announced that his bandmate had passed away from cancer after a brief illness. » Read more

2020-04-23
Shindig Festival Goes Lock-Down – Here's what they're saying: It's A Happening Thing! The Shindig! Magazine Lockdown Festival. In our days of no large gatherings of people, maybe it's still possible to have a music festival. Shindig! Magazine is giving it a go with a multi-artist streaming extravaganza on Saturday April 25. » Read more

2020-03-24
Bill Rieflin RIP – The sad news reaches us today of Bill Rieflin's death. Rieflin was best known as a drummer in bands ranging from post-punk to industrial to indie-rock to progressive rock, including work with The Blackouts, Ministry, Nine Inch Nails, Swans, Land, and King Crimson. Rieflin had been battling cancer for several years, and succumbed to it on March 24. He was 59. » Read more


Previously in Exposé...

Béla Fleck and the Flecktones - Outbound – I’ve been a big fan of Béla Fleck for quite a while, so I’m not sure how this one slipped under my radar for so long, especially given the stellar list of guest artists....  (2001) » Read more



Listen & discover



Print issues