Exposé Online banner

Montage — Montage
(Secret Entertainment SCRO50, 2014, CD)

by Peter Thelen, Published 2014-07-20

Montage Cover art

This is the opening salvo by this promising five-piece (g/k/b/d and dedicated vocalist) from Helsinki. Tasty guitar bits are often alternated with full-on hard rock and progressive elements reminiscent of the formative heady days of both genres, mixed with lesser amounts of folk and psychedelia. There’s enough complexity and variety in the arrangements to keep these eight cuts interesting for the duration, and the writing is exceptionally solid, leaning slightly toward the anthemic at times, with bright and purposeful melodies ruling the moment. One could triangulate on early Yes, classic Rush, and even a somewhat less complex Gentle Giant – or even Echolyn, and find good points of reference for their basic instrumental approach, although singer Mikko Heino often reminds me (both in his basic vocal style and harmony arrangements shared by the rest of the band) of Donald Fagen of Steely Dan. Guitarist Ronni Seppänen is the primary composer, with arrangements and song lyrics (in English) provided by the entire group. Some pieces like “Misty High” and “Shine” are really quite catchy and memorable, while others like “Mammoth,” “Trapeze,” and eight-minute closer “Strawberry Skies” are quite a bit more edgy and complex in nature. My only complaint (and a very minor one, at that) is that the album is a mere 32 minutes long; I think a couple more songs would have made it just right. Nonetheless, a very promising debut.


Filed under: New releases, 2014 releases

Related artist(s): Montage

Latest news

2020-07-22
Tim Smith RIP – Tim Smith, leader of the eccentric band Cardiacs, has died at the age of 59 after many years of health problems. Cardiacs was known for intense and complicated music that combined punk energy with the rhythmic and harmonic sophistication of progressive rock. » Read more

2020-07-12
Judy Dyble RIP – Singer-songwriter Judy Dyble, who was a founding member of Fairport Convention and one of the distinctive voices of the 60s folk revival in Britain, has died at the age of 71. Her passing came at the end of a long illness, though which she continued to work. » Read more

2020-07-06
Ennio Morricone RIP – Famed composer Ennio Morricone has died at the age of 91. The creator of scores for more than 500 movies, some of his works have become the most recognizable sounds in the history of cinema. His soundtracks for Sergio Leone's Westerns made from 1964 to 1971, are iconic landmarks in film music, but he also composed for dramas, comedies, and other genres. He won the Academy Award for Best Original Score in 2016 for The Hateful Eight. » Read more

2020-06-14
Keith Tippett RIP – One of the giants of British jazz has left us. Keith Graham Tippetts, known professionally as Keith Tippett, died today at the age of 72. His work from the late 60s into the 70s and beyond includes some of the greatest jazz produced in the UK, and stands as an impressive oevre to this day. » Read more

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


Previously in Exposé...

Anderson / Wakeman - The Living Tree – Yes's Jon Anderson and Rick Wakeman have enjoyed success both within and without the group. Considering that both are on the outs with their previous band, it makes sense that the two would...  (2011) » Read more



Listen & discover



Print issues