Exposé Online banner

Steam Theory — Asunder
((Not on label) no#, 2015, DL)

by Jon Davis, Published 2015-03-18

Asunder Cover artSteam Theory’s new release is full of big-sounding music, with multiple guitars, bass, drums, keyboards, and orchestra presenting ambitious instrumental music — 13 tracks spanning two CDs. In the studio, Steam Theory is really just Jason Denkevitz; he enlists other musicians for live performances, where they rearrange this music for the instruments available. All the orchestra parts are simulated on Asunder. I’m a firm believer in judging music by listening to it, not reading the credits, and in this case, I’d say the only downside to this method of production is a somewhat over-precise sound, complex and impressive but with the guitar parts being the only real human touch. That being said, Asunder sounds superb, with its classical flavor more Stravinsky than Beethoven, with modern harmonic touches and a few non-European elements added. There’s also a touch of fusion, but just because this is energetic instrumental music, not because of any real jazz elements. As much as I enjoy this album, I can’t help thinking some interaction between musicians in real time would help bring it to life — it’s kind of like looking at a beautifully rendered CGI rendition of the Himalayas: it’s lovely, but a real picture would have been even better. Facing reality, trying to record a project this ambitious would have required resources no independent musician could muster short of being independently wealthy, so we’ll take the simulation and applaud Denkevitz’s accomplishments.

Filed under: New releases, 2015 releases

Related artist(s): Steam Theory

Latest news

2019-11-07
Glenn Smith RIP – Glenn Smith, founder, mandolinist, and primary composer of the DeLand, Florida based prog / fusion band Magnatar, passed away on October 18th 2019 at the age of 68, after a brief illness.  » Read more

2019-11-04
Dino Brassea RIP – Word reaches us of the passing of Dino Brassea, who sang and played flute in Cast for many years. By our count, Brassea appeared on 11 Cast albums between 1994 and 2002. He also released music as a solo artist. » Read more

2019-10-06
Ginger Baker RIP – Legendary English drummer Ginger Baker has died at the age of 80. After coming to fame with Cream in the 60s alongside Eric Clapton and Jack Bruce, he became one of the most recognized and influential drummers of the rock era. On September 25, his family announced that he was critically ill, and on October 6 his death was confirmed. » Read more

2019-08-20
Alex's Hand Seeks Spa Treatment – American / European band Alex's Hand has a new album in the works called Hungarian Spa, which looks to be their biggest and best yet, featuring a large roster of guest musicians. They're seeking funding to take the project on the road, and are looking for help from the crowd of wisdom. » Read more

2019-06-05
Legendary Co-Founder of The 13th Floor Elevators Passes Away at Age 71 – Sadly, Roky Erickson passed away on May 31, 2019. Known as the father of psychedelic music and co-founder of the ground breaking 13th Floor Elevators, Roky had a profound influence on music from the 60s to today. Plagued by his own personal demons, Roky had a difficult life and is now free of these burdens. » Read more


Previously in Exposé...

Cédric Vuille - Faire – Guitarist and multi-instrumentalist Vuille may be better known as a founder member of the Swiss Band L’Ensemble Rayé, and Debile Menthol before that. But with little to no recording activity from...  (2011) » Read more



Listen & discover



Print issues