by MythofRock

After listening thoroughly to the new, sophomore album of Pennies by the Pound, “Nothingside”, I think that Helsinki, Finland, holds the key for a new era of progressive rock. Pennies by the Pound is a Finnish prog rock/indie art rock quartet, which has its own proposal about progressive rock music and how it should sound in the year 2023. Stylistically they are influenced by the likes of Yes, Rush, Genesis, Pink Floyd and King Crimson, however, they are influenced more by the late 70s/80s era of these legendary bands. Also, you can say that Pennies by the Pound have an indie rock touch, with some alternative, new wave, gothic, electro rock elements, which give a special flavor to the final outcome. The Finns manage to blend classic prog rock with the aforementioned elements, they aren’t so much interested for technique and virtuocity, as they try to express feelings, to touch the listener’s emotions and create an atmosphere. Here nice melodies can be found, along with a sophisticated approach. “Nothingside” is song-oriented; I can’t resist listening to songs like “Thus Spoke The Master”, “I Saw Her Dancing”, “The End Times” and “One Bitter Kiss” again and again! Many credits must be given to the two guitarists, Vesa Ranta and Alexander Meaney, for their extraordinary, emotional and intricate guitar work, to the gentle keyboardist and of course, to Johannes Susitaival, who sings with a great finesse. The grandeur of Pennies by the Pound will mesmerize every prog listener. We all must add this name to the top category of modern prog rock!

♦ 8/10

Dimitris Zacharopoulos



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