Tiles - Fly Paper
From the Great Lakes state, Tiles are an experienced progressive-rock outfit who've been on the scene for quite a few years. Like so many good bands, they've so far managed to slip under my radar. Now, I've got this copy of their newest record Fly Paper here and I've been very intrigued by it. Personally, my favorite band of any and all time is Rush; and Tiles seem to have a deep-rooted connection with that prog-rock trio. From guitarist Alex Lifeson's guest playing on "Sacred and Mundane" to long-time Rush collaborator Hugh Syme's contributions, and the overall sound featured on most of the songs. They sound like Rush for a new millenium, or at the very least a superior version of Porcupine Tree. They never try to do too much, never get pretentious; each of the songs on Fly Paper is a finely-tuned punch to the senses.
From the rolling rhythms of opener "Hide In My Shadow" to the impressive licks of "Sacred And Mundane" and onwards, the album unfolds as a prog lover's wet dream. The musicianship is tight, their technical chops on fine display throughout. They make ample use of wordly melodies, atmospheric acoustics, and a wide variety of instruments make appearances. They seem to take the archetype of a prog-rock band and make it their own. I am still unsure as to why I haven't heard of them before. There isn't a song on the album I'd call bad, but it does lose some ground over the latter half. Just slightly.
This record is going to get me to dig back into their catalog, for sure. The music is of a high quality, the musicians are of a high pedigree and the songwriting has all the touches of memorability and relevance. Of all the new prog I've heard in the last year or two, this album ranks among the best. It's worth your time if you call yourself a fan of progressive music, or more importantly a fan of bands like Rush and even Dream Theater, minus most of the metal. It's damn good rock, simply put.
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