The Weight of the World (2013)

– Sanguine Hum

In 2012 the British band Sanguine Hum recorded the excellent debut album Diving Bell (see review). I found the music on this album difficult to pigeonhole and therefore I advised our readers to check it out on the band’s website. In fact this is the only way to determine whether you like the music or not. At the time I wrote that I liked the album; I would like to enjoy this kind of music more often in the future. Well, sometimes the future doesn’t last that long because only one year later Sanguine Hum recorded a follow-up album.

It often happens that the next album delivered by bands after a short period of time lacks strong compositions, because the time to write new and strong material appears to be too short. Fortunately that’s not the case with Sanguine Hum. The Weight Of The World is of the same high level as their debut and hence Matt Baber (keyboards, drum programming), Joff Winks (guitar, vocals), Brad Waissman (bass) and Andrew Booker (drums) deserve a big compliment!

Once again they succeeded in recording seven tracks that have something to say music wise. Only this time I’m able to determine their music. The influences of the Canterbury scene are still present on this record, but the excellent vocals reminded me of a band like Muse, but also the singing of bands as Mew and Scritti Politti crossed my mind. I also noticed that the band members must have been familiar with acts like Frank Zappa or Gentle Giant. I heard the same kind of percussion sounds like marimba, glockenspiel, xylophone, etcetera, throughout the album probably performed on the keyboards.

I guess they also liked the albums made by Steve Hillage since the powerful guitar riffs tend towards his music. Their musical style is still hard to pinpoint, but maybe ‘ Radiohead meets Porcupine Tree’ is the best definition. It’s also difficult to name any favourite tracks because they didn’t include any weak ones. However, if I still have to designate a favourite track the almost fifteen-minute long title track will do, but in that case I have to mention the opening piece From The Ground Up as well.

Sanguine Hum made a name for themselves in the progressive rock scene, something they really deserve with The Weight Of The World. Their music sounds fresh and mesmerising. It will certainly attract many devotees of prog rock music especially those who enjoy the music of the above-mentioned bands!

Henri Strik