For some progressive rock or prog-rock (I’m still not clear on the generic distinction even after witnessing miles of passionate 3 am forum posts on the subject) often comes across a bit too full of itself, a little precocious, a little to smug. Many find full blown metal in all of it’s 468 sub-genres and cultish backwaters a little short on substance. Yes it’s technically clever but where’s the groove? Well, The Fierce and The Dead neatly sort the problem out in one fell, 100 second swoop.
The guitar work is technical but never impenetrable, riff based rather than bordering on musical brinkmanship and the band clearly know their way around song dynamics as they deliver waves of power and restraint that ebb and flow to maximum effect. Proggy but concisely delivered, wandering around the fringes of heavy territories but clearly aimed at grown ups. With both of the aforementioned genres often being mentioned in the same breath as Dungeons and Dragons or Buffy The Vampire Slayer maybe “aggressive progressive” is the way forward.