Instrumental progressive metal band Animals As Leaders are set to unleash The Joy of Motion, the group’s third studio album, which marks their first release since 2011’s Weightless. Initially the solo project of guitarist Tosin Abasi, Animals As Leaders are a three-piece force to be reckoned with; The Joy of Motion has the potential to really demonstrate that.
Each song is laden with their own unique riff and carried by the powerful drum beats; we definitely have a typical metal album on our hands, but that’s what we were expecting of course! Animals As Leaders have managed to stay true to their sound, the licks and the intriguing atmospheres we find ourselves being drawn into are what defines the band’s vibe. Opening track Kascade is the perfect introduction to the album, we are enveloped into the world of heavy metal; there is a lot going on in this track that it is almost hard not to keep up, but that makes it all the more fun taking in the dynamics of the track. Lippincott right down to business with the main riff and beat, another stellar track. Air Chrysalis is a lighter sounding track, which is refreshing to hear after rocking it out to the previous tracks.
The shortest track on the album, Another Year, is also another downbeat track; it has a riff that could almost be inspired by metal in the 80s, but it definitely has been modified enough to sound great today. Sure enough we get back into the heavy stuff with Physical Education which is introduced by the wicked drum pattern and awesome guitars present in the entire album. The rest of The Joy of Motion is also notable; Tooth and Claw, Crescent, The Future That Awaited Me, Para Mexer, The Woven Web, Mind-Spun and finally Nephele (just to name the rest of them) each play their own part in what makes this project great; they each tell their own story through the power of metal.
The Joy of Motion is definitely a must have for existing fans of Animals As Leaders or metal enthusiasts, the talent of each member of the band is demonstrated beyond belief to put this album together. The band could easily include a vocalist in their line-up, but listening to The Joy of Motion proves difficult to imagine it with vocals included. Not one track seems like one of those dreaded filler tracks, they each have their own purpose and combine as one to unleash this release of power with such attention to all detail. Awesome work guys!