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Eye Tree Π

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Album Review

What do you get when two Poles, one Hungarian, and one Englishman walk into a recording studio? Well, if that studio happened to be located in the Welsh countryside during the summer of 2008, then the answer is Eye Tree Pi — the third head-spinning long-player from the cryptically named Obiat. But it's not necessarily Obiat's diverse, pan-European lineage that dictates their music, so much as a Western-centric but nevertheless eclectic range of music styles, spanning four decades and then some. Recent parallels can be found in the alien prog metal of Australia's Alchemist and the space-sludge of Italians UFOMammut (in other words, Obiat get heavy), but the inspirational background of Obiat's lengthy sonic excursions dates back as far as a distant past where Hawkwind, Van Der Graaf Generator, and Black Sabbath all walked the Earth, but had little else in common beyond, perhaps, tax exile. And so, "Poison Thy Honey" gets us under way like an exotic space port bazaar, just before it is impacted by a molten metal asteroid; "Delights" withstands the tooth-rattling shuddering of takeoff before achieving interstellar overdrive; and "Serpent's Rites" floats gently across the inky ether on its way to untold galaxies of terror. Getting there can be a little boring, though, what with all those light years to hibernate across, and so neither the nightmarish riffing visions of "NoMad NoMind," nor the blissful doze of "Passive Attack" are likely to be remembered as clearly once the traveler awakes. By comparison, once it livens up with a belly-dancing mid-section, the intentionally mechanical glaze of "AA54089" suggests an existential super-computer breakdown straight out of 2001: A Space Odyssey (the only thing missing is a sample of its voice saying, "What are you doing, Dave?"). After all this, the persistent calm of "House of the Forgotten Sins" seems a tad too gentle a conclusion for Eye Tree Pi — I mean, where's the final, molecule-crunching dive into the heart of the black hole, just to see what's on the other side? The truth, as they say, is out there, and perhaps Obiat have intentionally left that question unanswered until the next part of their voyage. We shall see, but until then, Eye Tree Pi will surely stand as one of 2009's most intriguing and unpredictable heavy music releases.


Genre: Rock

Years Active:

A good example of the European Union in action through music, the band Obiat were originally formed in Poland (town of Szczecin, to be precise) by native guitarist Rafal Reutt and bassist Alessandro Nervo, before relocating to London, England, in the late '90s and hooking up with British drummer Neil Dawson and Hungarian-born singer Lazlo Pallagi. Their music, on the other hand, often seems born of another world entirely, as subsequent albums Accidentally Making Enemies (2002) and Emotionally Driven...
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Top Albums and Songs by Obiat

Eye Tree Π, Obiat
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