Tardive Dyskensia - Harmonic Confusion album review

Athens prog metallers avoid Greek tragedy with stellar fifth album.

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What’s in a name? Well, according to our dear friend Mr Internet, tardive dyskinesia is a neurological disorder characterised by involuntary movements of the face and jaw. Charming. It’s a pretty apt moniker, though, with Harmonic Confusion – the Greek prog metallers’ fifth full-length studio album – catapulted into action with the jolting, back-forth movements of instrumental salvo Insertion.

It’s a common theme, with groove-glazed tech riffs – like on the highlight Fire Red Glass Heart – mired in Mastodon-flecked muck, with singer and guitarist Manthos Stergiou’s vocal cords bulging at the seams. Proggers with a penchant for math flourishes, as well as guttural doom, will get their kicks from the battering ram brutality of tracks like Self Destructive Haze, but there’s enough chinks of light in the shade to win over most of the ear-shielding naysayers.

Harmonic Confusion is Tardive Dyskinesia’s most complete record yet, with less reliance placed on the brashness of their earlier work, and when it’s good, it’s really darn good. With the album mastered by Jens Bogren, who has worked with Opeth and Haken, the crisp, sparkling sound – allied with the hypnotic songs – should see this band make the next big leap forward.