After various incarnations and a few minor line-up reshuffles, London-based prog band Kyros appear to have settled on a sound and style that puts them at the front of the British prog scene.
The band, previously known as Synaesthesia, have drawn on their diverse influences from Kate Bush to Muse, to create a huge second album. Running at 1 hour 21 minutes, the album is a behemoth of progressive sounds and it's close to a concept album in terms of tone and content. Opening with a hiss of white noise followed by Technology Killed The Kids II the album incorporates themes from earlier works giving the album some continuity.
Pulling in science fiction ideas the album looks at the clashes between humanity and the modern world, for better or worse. The band reflect on our obsession and addiction with social media and tech and cleverly mix computerised sounds with traditional instruments throughout to illustrate their point. Cloudburst (also released as a single) offers some words of encouragement to "stand tall" through the adversity and chaos of the modern world.
There are vast guitar-scapes, rugged vocals and well-rounded musicianship on the album, but it's not a perfect body of work. In places, it feels overly long and too concerned with creating mammoth tracks, which makes the album lose focus. But there are moments of great incite including the line "I'm better off with friends, even though I've never seen their faces." The second disc of the album feels like it finds its level, helped along by some terrific tracks including Monster and Dilate.
Although they may have overstretched themselves with the scale of the album, Kyros are surely emerging stars on the British prog scene.