The Weirding is the latest release from Progressive Rockers Astra. This is a mostly instrumental, concept disc that the band’s bio says is centered around “death, introspection and contemplating what lies beyond. It’s about pondering the rapidly deteriorating state of the world today and trying to find an escape.”

Let me first start by saying this is a very complex CD with many different layers woven into the fabric of each and every song. As one would expect from a Progressive record the focal point is on the songwriting and the musicianship and based on those criteria, Astra delivers in a big way. At times, the music is very ethereal and at others it almost becomes psychedelic and sort of a flashback to mid-seventies. The one thing that can be said about this disc is that it truly transcends all musical genres.

Admittedly, I am not the biggest fan of the Progressive scene mainly because I feel that at times bands of this genre tend to overdue things in an effort to impress and often times the result is just the opposite. Sometime less is more; at least in my book.

I think the success of The Weirding is attained not only through the fantastic playing but also through the very unpretentious, unpresumptuous manner in which the songs are delivered. By not overcrowding and or over complicating each tune they have in essence allowed them to breathe and be enjoyed for what they are; good songs. As far as production goes this is a great sounding record. It is crisp, clean and extremely well recorded and mixed.

While I don’t think The Weirding is a disc to crank up and cruise down the highway with. I do feel it lends itself more to those mellow more reflective, contemplative moments. I found it the perfect accompaniment to sitting on the front porch with a good dark beer and taking it all in.  [ END ]

Track Listing:

01. The Rising Of The Black Sun
02. The Weirding
03. Silent Sleep
04. The River Under
06. Broken Glass
07. The Dawning Of Ophiuchus
08. Beyond To Slight The Maze

Run Time: 79:00