Quo – “Trama” Album Review (prog rock/metal)

SONY DSCWe venture into the world of progressive rock/metal for today’s offering; an upcoming 10-song release from our friends at Machine Man Records…. Trama from Quo.

Quo is a solo side-project from Nate Exx Gradowski of AutomatoN and Isolated Antagonist.

From Machine Man Records: “Created in early 2016, Quo is a progressive rock/metal journey dealing with the darkest human life issues with content dealing with death, loss, mental illness, the paranormal and loneliness.”

In recent weeks we reviewed a pair of releases from Nate’s side-project AutomatoN; the cyber-metal infused Sub-Coma and 1979; a departure rooted in new wave/synthpop.  Quo’s vision incorporates more of a prog rock/metal vibe although there are some undeniable similarities to AutomatoN.  There is something uniquely identifiable about the drum beat, for example.  However, Quo still differs significantly with the cleaner vocals and occasional acoustic guitar to name just a couple of things. 

Trama is one of those releases that puts the listener in a temporary state of suspension, trying to rack their brains to think what these tracks remind them of.  One is then reminded that Nate is one of those guys who honors his influences just enough but possesses more originality, thus creating room for new fans and those of familiar artists to be happy.

The stand-out tracks on Trama are easily the crushing “The Lost Sun” with its melodic descent or the album closer, “Here I Am;” a track that bears a slight resemblance to “Silent Lucidity” from Queensryche.  “Here I Sit” is slightly reminiscent to the sound of Pink Floyd or an acoustic, melancholic Jane’s Addiction.  That will give you some idea of the dynamic of this release.

Trama is lyrically introspective but mindfully observant of the external world around the individual vantage point.  Musically, its resemblance places one foot in the slight past and one against the rear-end of the future.  Quo gives a new voice for prog rock/metal by blurring the lines and adding the atmosphere.

Trama is a digital-only release and will be available on March 6 via Machine Man Records.  


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