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Umphrey's McGee - Anchor Drops review


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Band: Umphrey's McGee
Album: Anchor Drops
Release date: June 2004

01. Plunger
02. Anchor Drops
03. In The Kitchen
04. Bullhead City
05. Miss Tinkle's Overture
06. Uncommon
07. JaJunk pt. I
08. 13 Days
09. JaJunk pt. II
10. Walletsworth
11. Robot World
12. Mulche's Odyssey
13. Wife Soup
14. The Pequod

Umphrey's McGee comes from the USA. This band is without any doubt one of the kings of the improvisational-rock scene. Driven by diverse musical influences, from progressive-rock to metal to funk to folk to jazz-fusion to classic song-based rock-and roll Umphrey's McGee is evidently an original band, something really uncommon. I'm sorry for all the barbarians who want Death Metal, sorry guys, this review is not for you. However the prog metal fans are welcome and all the ones who like real musical performances must have a look on this band too?

If you're a Frank Zappa fan or if you're only interested into "Jam" musical sessions, Umphrey's McGee is for you. I know, some of you are already wondering why we have this review on Metalstorm, well the answer is simple: the band is signed on Inside Out Records, the German label specialised in Progressive Metal, and of course Umphrey's McGee is not signed on the label for nothing. If I must admit that the band is absolutely not a Metal band, I can't deny that we have some inspirations which come from Progressive Metal too, especially with the great guitars solo. But the great thing with Umphrey's McGee is this very good feeling that the music of the band gives. All is really positive, this "happy" music which can sounds Jazzy or even Funk [the bass is more than presents, that's sooo good] is a real musical holidays when you like music in general. Of course it's more Rock than anything else, the voice of the singer sound really "pop" but that's not a real problem and as I said before, this is Jam music, all can be really progressive and absolutely unconventional on a side. All the musicians are damn great, and this "Anchor Drops" which is not only a musical demonstration, there is a real message through the really good lyrics. This is a must for all the ones who are into prog metal not in the vein of bands like Symphony X, but bands like Flower Kings or Spock's Beards or Marillion, even if it's impossible to do a comparison between all this bands. Frank Zappa is certainly the name that you must rember if you just want an idea.
The production of the album is perfect with a really cleany sound and the work on the mixing parts of the music is nice. On this kind of album we need the perfection and here we have it? nice?

This is not for sure an album for the blinded Metal Heads, but if you like good music, if you like progressive rock, Umphrey's McGee is a must really. Sometime it's good to do a break and this band which is on the edge of a lot of musical styles is a great band and "Anchor Drops" just give me the feeling that I should try to discover and to listen to a bit more this kind of music.

Written by Jeff | 31.01.2005

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