Story Of A Life: Story Of A Life

Progressive ears will prick up at the Atlantan fusioneers’ debut.

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The Progressive Ears forum is a valuable resource and a good hub for the good-natured, high-minded online banter fans of this genre are used to (knowing cough).

The curator of the site is Sean Tonar, a man who certainly walks it like he talks it. Based in Atlanta, Georgia, Story Of A Life is his own ‘progressive fusion jam band’, and their likeable self-titled debut shows they’re as in in love with the mid-70s as they are adept at re-creating it. We’re in Return To Forever, Weather Report territory here (what my nan used to call ‘Ceefax music’, bless her). The Moogs are wah-y, the chords augmented and the arrangements tight. The languid Continental Blue sets the Berklee-brained tone – retro synths colouring and leading this jazzy workout. Tonar’s restrained guitar adds shimmering, chorused chords and smooth-jazz octaves. Travelin Light and Anything show off Bill Graham’s sub Zaniwul/Corea keysmanship and Brian ‘Thor’ Coutts’ ornate, frenetic-yet-controlled drumming. If Globetrekker loses its way at times (Tonar a little self-conscious with his trickier, Steve-Howe-style licks), there’s more than enough in the lovely Lucid Dream for ballast.