The Way To "Progtronica" Is Worth The Fare Review

I’ve never been a huge fan of progressive alt-rock. I don’t know what it is, per se, but it just never really clicked with me. Going into Gumshen’s Progtronica, this was in the back of my mind, which, as a reviewer, is a crappy thing to do, to carry baggage into a review. At the same time, I try to acknowledge this as a way to move forward.

Gumshen’s latest is an interesting take on the genre. “Bell Ringer” is a great track that actually has quite a bit of funk behind it, surprisingly. The lyrics are a little silly, but lead singer Ron Hippe’s got a neat voice, reminiscent of Dave One of Chromeo, as weird as that might sound. Hippe’s certainly not a knock-off of One or anything like that, but upon first listen, that’s who Hippe reminded me of, right off the bat. I like it a lot.

Hippe plays with an almost country-esque tawng on “Fine One To Talk,” the slowest of slow-jams on the album. Fortunately, the country twang fades a bit, making way for something a little more Vast or Wolfsheim-inspired, I’d say. An epic-sounding and beautiful track, “Fine One To Talk” might be the true standout of the album, as it really covers the bases of the genre, playing with everything along the way and crafting a beautiful melodic experience.

“Fragile We Are Castles” is like an 80’s horror movie interpreted through basic cable. I love it. The synth-y horror movie-esque keyboard coupled with some Goblin-inspired guitar, I had a minor freak-out to the song, as it evoked images of Suspiria, one of the best horror flicks ever made. I know that’s an odd statement to make, but it’s true, “Fragile We Are Castles” could fit in Phantasm, Suspiria or the original Dawn of the Dead, it’s like a throwback from the 70’s-80’s. Great stuff.

"Gumshen - "Progtronica"" is on sale January 1, 2014 from N/A.

Robert Ottone • Staff Writer

A natural bon vivant in love with cigars, finery and luxurious booze, SelfieRob aims to make light of the world around him while living the party boy lifestyle. From the Hamptons to NYC and beyond, SelfieRob lives life to the fullest.


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