Exposé Online banner

Montage — Metamorphosis
(Fastball FBI6C2155, 2016, CD)

by Peter Thelen, Published 2017-01-11

Metamorphosis Cover art

Since their respectable and promising debut two years ago, Helsinki’s Montage have continued forward with a excellent follow-up that brings forward some of the harder rock aspects of their sound, along with strong contrasts of acoustic guitar bits that punctuate the powerful driving sound. Since their eponymous first release, the band has lost their frontman and replaced him with new lead vocalist Vesa Paavonen, which accounts for a major change in their sound, and perhaps is a bit more appropriate for their style of music than original singer Mikko Heino. The remaining four band members are the same: Drummer Kim Etelävuori, guitarist Roni Seppänen, keyboard player Jukka Parkas (who also created the cover art), and bassist Taneli Tulkki, all except the latter sharing backing vocal duties. The nine cuts herein, this time totaling 42 minutes, are all group compositions, obviously reflecting some road experience from between the two albums as to what sort of sound works best. One important note is that while many or most of the tracks are solidly in hard rock territory, one will never hear the chugga-chugga and 64 note-per-measure runs that typify metal and progressive metal; their approach could be better be approximated to classic era Rush with more straightforward druming and some keyboard orchestrations and ornamentations blended into the mix. Overall, a very integrated sound with no one player spending too much time in the spotlight, all in service to the compositions and well balanced arrangements. The opening tracks of 70s style rock start giving way mid-set to a more progressive sound typified by the tracks “Black Magic” and “Haunted,” where the writing and arrangements become more complex and interesting, yet remain faithful to the essence of the hard rock spirit. “Carved in Stone” closes the disc in contrast, based on an acoustic guitar idea with powerful embellishments highlighting the proceedings, showcasing Paavonen’s lead vocals. All taken, it’s good to see Montage back and finding their way.


Filed under: New releases, 2016 releases

Related artist(s): Montage

Latest news

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

2020-03-17
Cruise to the Edge and Seaprog 2020 Festivals Postponed – The worldwide outbreak of the novel coronavirus has started to produce casualties in the music world, and festivals are not immune. We've had word that both the Cruise to the Edge (originally slated for March 27 - April 1) and Seaprog (originally June 5-7) have been postponed to later dates, with those dates to be announced. » Read more

2020-03-06
McCoy Typer RIP – Word reaches us today of the passing of one of the most influential pianists in the history of jazz, McCoy Tyner. His tenure with John Coltrane in the early 60s includes some of the most treasured recordings of the era, including My Favorite Things and A Love Supreme. After leaving Coltrane's group, he had a long and successful solo career. He was 81. » Read more

2020-02-18
Jon Christensen RIP – Word reaches us today of the passing of Norwegian drummer Jon Christensen, a musician whose sensitive playing did much to help define the atmospheric sound of ECM jazz recordings. His work with Jan Garbarek, Bobo Stenson, Terje Rypdal, and many more was sensitive and varied, adapting to a wide variety of styles while maintaining a distinct identity of its own. Christensen was 76. » Read more

2020-01-21
Gong Announces UK Tour for 2020 – Having spent the last few years touring the world, including dates in Japan with psych legend Steve Hillage, multiple headline European tours and festivals, America’s Cruise to the Edge festival, a South America headline tour, and a headline performance at Tomorrow Festival in China, the band have won the hearts of both traditional and modern Gong fanbases. During this live journey, Gong has delved further into the truly psychedelic, exploratory, and mind-expanding side of the music. » Read more


Previously in Exposé...

Tabula Rasa - Ekkedien Tanssi – Ekkedien Tanssi was the second album by this Finnish five-piece who created a type of mellow, melodic prog not unlike the music of Camel. Indeed, this album is comparable in both style and quality to...  (1994) » Read more



Listen & discover



Print issues