DPRP review

Low Budget Orchestra - The Second Best

Country of Origin: Finland
Format: CD
Record Label: Independent
Catalogue #: LBM-02
Year of Release: 2008
Time: 40:20
Info: Low Budget Orchestra
Samples: Click here

Tracklist: Take On The World (5:49), Settle For The Second (3:52), Emperor's New Clothes (4:36), Nothing Will Be The Same (5:45), Stalemate (4:50), Rather Than Words (4:45), Juliet's Waiting (5:03), Dream Another (5:36)

When I was a kid, my family and I used to go visit our cousin "Stretch" in the interior deep woods of Maine. Stretch was a gun collector and prided himself on his vast collection of firearms. I couldn't have been older than twelve at the time, and recall Stretch taking us out to a shooting area by his house and allowing us to fire off a few shots. My gun of choice was the M-16. The M-60 was off limits, as at the time it was a gun that was bigger than I was. Stretch would place an aspirin tablet in the side of a cliff and the idea was to fire the gun and hit the tablet. Of course, I couldn't. But Finnish multi-instrumentalist Mikko Muranen, under the moniker Low Budget Orchestra, has accurately hit a sonic target of sorts with the machine gun riffs found on his sophomore release The Second Best. The style of music on the CD is instrumental progressive rock, slightly aligned toward prog metal via those heavy guitar riffs.

The Thompson submachine gun rapid riffs are evident on the track Stalemate, which features some industrial synths, a rock groove, and an overall wall of sound reminding me of that rock outcropping I fired at all those years ago. Don't let the name fool you; there is nothing low budget about the CD's sound. The moniker rather seems to serve as a symbol of the indie, D.I.Y. multi-instrumental nature of the music. The CD's eight instrumental tracks are composed, performed and produced well, and are smoothly linked together by spoken word snippets with each track.

The guitars and synths on the CD are balanced nicely, with a crystal clear programmed backbeat. Muranen is a fine guitarist, synth man, and drum programmer. Some of the drum programming heard on Rather Than Words is evident of the electronic drum work Neil Peart did in the mid-eighties day of Rush.

The CD comes in gatefold packaging designed in an outer space motif.

This CD will appeal mostly to fans of riff-based, synth-flavoured instrumental rock. Not advised for wimps.

I can think of no room for improvement from this fine project.

Conclusion: 8 out of 10


You can check out the review in it's original DPRP-site here.

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