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

2019-04-24
Help MoonJune Bring Great Music to Life – Like many music lovers around the world, we’ve been thrilled and amazed to hear the recordings that have been released by MoonJune from sessions at La Casa Murada in Spain. Such label stalwarts as Mark Wingfield, Markus Reuter, Asaf Sirkis, Tony Levin, Dusan Jevtovic, Vasil Hadzimanov, and many more have gathered in various combinations at the studio to produce some of the most creative music in recent years. Now, label head Leonardo Pavkovic is offering a compilation, La Casa Murada - MoonJune Sessions, Volume One, as a fundraiser for upcoming sessions. » Read more

2019-04-10
The Pineapple Thief to Tour North America – November and December of 2019 will see The Pineapple Thief bringing their music to Canada, Mexico, and the US, and famed drummer Gavin Harrison will be on board. The band has been touring extensively in Europe, but North America will be new territory for them. » Read more

2019-03-25
Scott Walker RIP – Noel Scott Engel, better known as Scott Walker, was one of the most intriguing and enigmatic musical figures in the second half of the 20th Century. His strange career started with The Walker Brothers, an American pop group that featured no one named Walker and no brothers. After moving to England in 1965, they had a series of hit singles. Scott's solo work started with Scott in 1967. Starting in the 80s, his work took an increasingly avant-garde turn. » Read more

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


Previously in Exposé...

Julie Slick - Julie Slick – Being from a famous music family has definitely helped bassist Julie Slick get a leg up on the competition. A graduate of the Paul Green School of Rock, Slick and her just slightly older brother Eric...  (2011) » Read more



Listen & discover



Print issues