It’s hard to nail The Dark Matter Trio down to a particular genre. The improvisation and rhythm of jazz is ever-present on the Harrisburg-based instrumental outfit’s latest release, “The Puzzle with No Pieces,” but there are heavy progressive rock and jam influences also at play.
Perhaps it is this unexpected, yet seamless meshing of styles that makes “The Puzzle with No Pieces” so interesting. You never quite know where the record is going, causing you to keep your ears tuned in and your mind at work. The band often visits several different ideas as movements in a single song. Take the triple-named Brenda Lea/Myrtle Likes to Swing/All Hallows Eve for example, which starts as an acoustic rocker with a bass and guitar double melody before heading into a folk/bluegrass movement.
Another example of the band’s versatility is the nine-minute closing title track. This jazz-inspired tune progresses gradually into a headbanging rock outro to conclude the listening journey.
In the end, The Dark Matter Trio has chosen an appropriate name for “The Puzzle with No Pieces.” Each of these ten tracks takes on a different shape in the form of varying soundscapes. Yet, it is these individual parts that comprise a complete work of art.
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Sketchbook of a Melancholy Fisherman
Not About Time
Funny Little Bird
Big Red Truck
Brenda Lea / Myrtle Likes to Swing / All Hallows Eve
Slow Motion Fight Scene
The Puzzle With No Pieces