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Six by Six - Six by Six

Six by Six
Six by Six
by Dave "That Metal Guy" Campbell at 24 July 2022, 7:53 AM

The term “six by six” can conjure various images. It could be something of large and impressive stature or perhaps the dimensions of a newly discovered space on the planet. For some, it may be the exponential potential of those numbers. For others, it might bring to mind the rhythmic pulse of sound waves. Now, for the initiated, for those in the know, SIX BY SIX is perhaps all of those things. It’s also the name for an exciting new band. It’s a sizable collaboration filling a massive sonic space and driven by three renowned and diverse musicians of international origin. The anticipation is palpable as the group is about to release its eponymous debut album on the InsideOutMusic. The album contains ten tracks.

“Yearning to Fly” is the first cut. The main riff is a little dirty and sleazy at first, while bass and keyboards fill the background. I like the instrumental passages and little better than the ones with vocals…the band just seems more comfortable. “China” is a shorter number, with another crunchy and groovy riff. The melodies are there, but they are just not very linear in my opinion. “Reason to Feel Calm Again” begins with some spacy tones and the steady pulse of keyboards. This song feels more accessible to me. This is what I am talking about. The melodies are grand, and the sound fills the air. The bass guitar begins to thump away over rough rhythms and leads, as the band segues into a key change. It finishes on a strong crescendo.

“The Upside of Down” sports a smooth and fun-loving melody and the band seems to be hitting their stride on the album, playing with confidence and the liberal use of imposing sounds. The keyboard and bass work in this song shine. “Casino” features some funky sounds and complex arrangements that just work very well together. This is how you can tell a great collection of musicians from just average ones…the intricacies are not lost to the ear of the untrained listener. “Live Forever” is a short and tender song reflecting the sentiment that all of us human seem to hold dear. Would you really want to live forever? The answer doesn’t seem as simple as it is. “The Last Words on Earth” opens with magnanimous organ notes and a thick and heavy slab of riffing together with chunky bass notes. Robert pushes his voice into the upper ranges, and there is a lot going on in this track.

“Skyfall” features a rough guitar riff that swings with confidence. The verses of the song are a little tranquil and melancholy sounding, but when they fellas want to turn it up, they do. “Battle of a Lifetime” moves with a tender sound of acoustic guitars and smooth, mellow vocals. The funky bass notes here provide a heavy backdrop while the guitars hold much of the melody. It alternates between grey skies with rain and blue skies with sun. “Save the Night” closes the album. A tough energy flows from this song as the band hits accents hard and with perfect timing. The vocal harmonies towards the end are bright and cheery, and the band leaves you feeling good.

After two decent but not excitable opening songs, the album began to take off and diversify. And take off it did, indeed. I normally stay away from these “supergroups” of sorts because the sum tends not to reflect the individual part, and many of these albums have fallen flat for me. But this trio knows how to make music together, with a synergy that isn’t often heard today. Perhaps the best compliment that I cay pay them is that they sound like a band that have been together for years, not a band debuting their first album. Progressive fans—get your hands on this album for sure.

Songwriting: 8
Musicianship: 9
Memorability: 7
Production: 9

4 Star Rating

Tracklist:
1. Yearning to Fly
2. China
3. Reason to Feel Calm Again
4. The Upside of Down
5. Casino
6. Live Forever
7. The Last Words on Earth
8. Skyfall
9. Battle of a Lifetime
10. Save the Night
Lineup:
Ian Crichton – Guitars
Nigel Glockler – Drums
Robert Berry – Bass, Keyboards, Vocals
Record Label: InsideOut Music
     


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