Steak Number Eight – Kosmokoma (Indie Recordings)

Genre: Progressive Metal

Steak Number Eight’s sophomore effort, The Hutch, was one of the highlights of 2013, a breathtaking piece of post-rocking, progressive metal, a body of work that marked the Belgians as real contenders. Koskomoma, sadly, doesn’t reach the peaks of its predecessor, but it’s nevertheless an ambitious album with plenty of depth… and some magical moments.

Among its many highlights is the intriguing Floydscape of Knows Sees Tells All, a gentle journey to the galaxy’s outer reaches, while there’s also a healthy sprinkling of stardust on the punchy, tapping frenzy of opener Return Of The Kolomon.

Taken as a whole, Kosmokoma requires a lot of patience – and perhaps has less impact than The Hutch as a result. Some fat could certainly have been trimmed from its lengthy compositions.

That said, Steak Number Eight have reinforced their status as intelligent songwriters and supremely gifted musicians: they remain a bright hope for progressive metal, and Kosmokoma boasts enough quality to maintain the band’s forward momentum.