1. Who is the band? What is their history? What motivates them?
"Scale the Summit can be perceived as many things: young, skilled, ambitious, progressive, instrumental, and unique among many other perceptions. Conceived from the imagination and talent of Chris L. and Travis L., the Los Angeles, CA founded band was born in late 2004. Chris and Travis set out with the objective to create something different, a type of instrumental music that could be widely accessible while not abandoning a technical and melodic foundation. Patrick S. joined the band in March of 2005 adding his own infusion of vigorous percussion and drumming. As the songs continued to develop in August of 2005, Jordan E. became the newest addition to Scale the Summit as the bass player. The four-piece band emanated an unparalleled musical chemistry including symphonious guitar playing, dynamic bass, and thundering drums. With several shows under their belt and a fan following that only shadows the many possibilities and opportunities to come for this band, Scale the Summit has set its mark to enrapture worldwide audiences with their upcoming album release." Scale the Summit.com, 2009).
2. Why did they make this album? What was the passion or message that forced them to produce what they have? Or, simply what was their motivation for the themes they chose for this album?
STS is a new band wanting to make their mark and build a fan base. They have delivered an album based on instrumentals and are currently touring to support their second album.
3. What message are they delivering through their lyrics and music?
This is the toughest part of the review. I like the spirit of this band and the music, but since there are no lyrics, there is not much of a message to discuss. The music is wonderful, but without lyrics it becomes hard to differentiate one song from the next. The music is good, but I don’t think it stands on its own without lyrics or some human voices or presence beyond the wonderful guitar and drum extravaganzas that are present on the album.
Kitaro, Vangelis, and other famous instrumentalist add some human vocal elements into their music in some way to help differentiate songs. I began to think that some of the songs were guitar “work – outs” for guitar technicians. I don’t doubt the riffs and things these guys do with guitars are amazing, but I am not sure it will hold the attention of the non – technical or average listener for very long.
I really like the first song Bloom, but beyond that I get to the point that I want the album to end. It is not a very long to begin with and I was looking forward to more epics after previewing their My Space page. But there are none here. From my perspective they will need a good lyricist and vocalist to make it beyond the technical crowd, who are probably happy to hear different variations on the same theme..
4. Does this music improve, change, or add to the genre? What does the listener receive from listening to the music?
It is instrumental prog or hard rock by nature, and the fact that there are no vocals does not exactly change prog, but it provides a new artist in the genre. Not all of their songs were available for sampling on My Space when I first visited their My Space page. Most bands do not preview the entire song anyway, so there is no way to know what to expect completely until you get it.
5. Does it have longevity? Is it something a fan will like to play again and again?
For me, I will wait and make certain they have added lyrics and a vocalist before I have an interest in any more of their recordings.
Rating: 5/10 – Mostly for the technical precision of the guitar licks and drum rhythms. The music seems repetitive and as an average listener without technical experience. I feel left out of the music they were trying to bring across.
Reviewed by Prof on April 30th, 2009