VOYAGER – Ghost Mile (2017)
Not to be confused with a couple of acts using the same name, this VOYAGER hails from Australia and their music, certainly, is quite unique and original. Conceived in 1999 by vocalist Danny Estrin, Voyager has five albums under its belt, each one propelling them further into cult status as an elite progressive band.
We were impressed in this blog with the band’s previous effort and now Voyager did it again; a new, awe-inspiring album titled “Ghost Mile“.
Combining flamboyant musicianship and accessible songwriting is a delicate balance which many aspire towards but few achieve. Voyager have the finesse and maturity to manage this tightrope act between awe inspiring and attention grabbing music.
“Ghost Mile” is an album that provides a shining example of just how heavy and how technical you can get in this genre without sacrificing a good song and an easy melody.
It’s a kind of conceptual marriage between riffs that bend your brain, grooves that hurt your neck and lines that can have you singing along simultaneously.
For the uninitiated, Voyager are from Perth and play a progressive rock / metal style of music that features terrific melodic vocal performances which could have just as easily suited the new-wave pop era of 1980’s.
The opening song ‘Ascension’ starts proceedings off with a middle-eastern feeling that somehow reminds me of the opening theme music of the sci-fi show Stargate until the deep churning riff and elaborated chops kick in. It’s killer. The crystal clear vocal production makes it easy to appreciate vocalist Danny Estrin’s incredible range and control of his tone. It’s huge.
‘Lifeline’ the band sound as committed to the riff wizardry as ever. The clean picked guitar with dotted-8 delay’s pings and rings out while the massive dream-theatre-esque snare rolls and syncopated stop start technicality shine through. The smiles on my face at this point couldn’t get any bigger reminding me of the first time I heard DT’s ‘Images and Words’. Brilliant.
Title track ‘Ghost Mile’ is just as stunning; the freedom afforded to the bass to roll and stutter over the drums is a great touch through the verses and the vocals steal the show, again.
Then if you need a melodic, atmospheric tune to balance all the previous intensity, ‘To The Riverside’ is the right choice.
I could genuinely go on for ages about all the standout moments, struggling to use words that wouldn’t honestly do it justice… “Ghost Mile” is a terrific album.
There isn’t a single song that’s not worth hearing. The quality from beginning to end is absolutely top notch.
Voyage have long held the respect and approval of peers and critics with Australia’s heavy music landscape and certainly the world beyond that. The release of ‘Ghost Mile’ will only solidify that further and doubtless will reach new listeners all over the world.
01 – Ascension
02 – Misery Is Only Company
03 – Lifeline
04 – The Fragile Serene
05 – To the Riverside
06 – Ghost Mile
07 – What a Wonderful Day
08 – Disconnected
09 – This Gentle Earth (1981)
10 – As the City Takes the Night
Daniel “Nephil” Estrin – Vocals, Keyboards
Simone Dow – Guitars
Scott Kay – Guitars
Alex Canion – Bass
Ashley Doodkorte – Drums
BUY IT !