When I found the album I thought it’s gonna be a shredder style only, as you find a guitarist instrumental progressive metal album. But I was very stunned with the song structures and melodies indeed. Matt Chanway is an instrumental guitar player and lead guitarist for western Canada’s old-school death/thrash metal act, Assimilation.
Based on his musical influences; it was obvious that his music was kinda aggressive, speed transactions and professional movements on different timing variations. Matt released his debut self-titled album on December, 2016. The album includes six instrumental tracks that are all under the progressive and instrumental metal umbrella. ‘Evidence Of The Arcane’, is the first track that starts with harsh rhythmic style and many variations in its structure. I like the solo deliverance of this track too. When I went to the second one ‘The Receiver Of Wisdom’ it seems that the speed/thrash metal touch will accompany us in this album, as I see a speed harsh start, I really got interested in the track starting from the second verse, especially with the guitar licking. The track continued with nice soloing and harsh speed guitar rhythms and drumming and that was clearer in the bridge section. Honestly, I have no idea why the artist called these tracks ‘Harbinger 2.1’ and ‘271114’ but I like tracks with such unique identity; makes me more curious to listen. However, I don’t classify these tracks as progressive, I like their thrash effect, they are like pure 80s thrash metal with modern soloing/rhythmic styles flavors.
‘Eyes in the Sky’, just WOW! This is my ultimate favorite track in this album. Drums and guitars parts are just awesome. I love the guitar riff so much, and how the drums breaking-it over it. It’s just stunning. Also, the next part took me back to my beloved 80s metal era! I really felt the guitar here was the vocalist, not just a string instrument doing some melodies. The solo of this track took an oriental mode, which helped the track output very much indeed.
Getting to the final track ‘Lucidity’. It takes a turn to the extreme metal style more. Harsh melodic intro, cool one! But also, it got very catchy after the intro in which I was expecting it to be slower as many artists do, but that was kinda new to me and unexpected, which again is extremely powerful. And that delivered the progressive style flavor very well.
At last, I’d recommend this guitar especially for guitarists, I am sure they will find what they want. I would rate it 8/10. In addition, I am waiting Matt’s debut album release which will be out on March, 2017.
Edited by: NJ Bakr