MASCHINE – Rubidium
Guitarist /vocalist Luke Machin is no slouch at his instrument. Between the ages of 8-12, he averaged 8 hours of practice a day at his craft- sometimes up to 10 hours in a given day. As a safe estimate, that would eclipse the 10,000 hours of practice author Malcolm Gladwell mentions in his book "Outliers" to become an expert. Now in his early 20’s, he branches off with fellow The Tangent member bassist Daniel Mash to form this new quintet Maschine and release a debut album in the 7 track, 58 minute "Rubidium".
Filling out the lineup is keyboardist Georgia Lewis, second guitarist Elliott Fuller, and drummer James Stewart- and one thing is for sure, material as diverse as the whirly dervish roller coaster opener "The Fallen" at 10:16 on through to the psychedelic, quieter jazz/new age "Venga" needs multiple exposures to fully grasp all the cracks and crevices going on with these progressive rock arrangements. Proficient players plus progressive rock could equal disaster if the airwaves aren’t tempered with a dedicated balance to hooks, synchronicity, and harmonies- and Maschine live for that challenge and achieve it adequately.
Dream Theater, Pain Of Salvation, Opeth, Genesis, and System of a Down would be five influential acts that this five-piece take to heart, but there is something special about the way they build up their sound- shaking it up from soft to hard and hypnotic for the title cut, or throwing down time signature challenges that allow the instrumentalists to rise to the occasion with duo or trio syncopation parts in "Eyes Pt.1". Not everything is loud and bombastic- the songwriting intuition often displays remarkable patience in the quieter moments where what is said breathes a little more.
Maschine can develop an eclectic following based on their sound base. Progressive rock and metal fans alike would find a lot to enjoy about this UK act.