Thursday, March 14, 7:30 p.m.
The Redstone Room, 129 Main Street, Davenport IA
NYC-based “sci-fi fusion” trio Consider the Source brings its pyrotechnic-laden prog opuses to the Redstone Room stage on March 14.
Given the current downtick in the overall influence of the guitar/bass/drum-trio format and the receding role of rock in the commercially viable musical landscape, the rock bands that break through into wider consciousness tend to be on the simpler, nostalgic side of the spectrum. By focusing on pop-based song structures and vocal flair, and playing up their connection to traditions such as the British Invasion or Nuggets-era psychedelia, bands sidestep any concern that they’re making music “just for musicians” and intend to connect with their audiences on a more nuanced, emotional level. Consider the Source operates from a viewpoint that couldn’t be any further removed from this mentality. These guys have clearly been woodshedding for their entire lives to play their instruments with such unabashed dexterity. They craft instrumental songs that are constantly upending themselves with so many jackhammer riffs, dizzying solos, and sudden dips into contrasting atmospheres that any two-minute passage of their music will likely contain more ideas than most bands’ entire albums. All three band members regularly churn through riffs beyond the realm of 32nd notes, pouring out torrents of labyrinthine prog metal and two-handed guitar tapping that seems designed to stun their listeners into submission – or at least to provoke the crowd members in the front row to do that thing where they raise their hands towards the band and twiddle their fingers back and forth as fast as they can like they’re playing along on guitar at warp speed.
There are plenty of precedents for this kind of blistering prog virtuosity, but not many have been heard from in above-ground spheres for at least the last five to 10 years. Scale the Summit, Animals as Leaders, and Dream Theater offshoot Liquid Tension Experiment all come to mind as precedents where any semblance of lead vocalizing or pop songwriting are left behind in favor of a sense of continual adventure and stylistic upheaval – and, yes, constant in-your-face, tech-death shredding. For the uninitiated, their swirling stream of notes might crest into showboat territory. But the band never reaches the state of abject inundation thanks to wisely placed melodic interludes and flashes of electronic variation pumped from analog synths, transfiguring guitar effects, and drum sample pads. In their own minds, I’m sure Consider the Source make music fit to soundtrack an animated montage of clashes between alien demonoids in another dimension, with galactic stakes higher than anything on the level of mere human drama.
Consider the Source plays Davenport's Redstone Room on March 14 with an opening set by Condor & Jaybird, admission to the 7:30 p.m. concert is $10-12, and more information and tickets are available by calling (563)326-1333 or visiting RiverMusicExperience.org.