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Methaphor - Starfooted, (CD, 73:51) GALILEO 0002
Galileo Records
P.O. Box 30
9126 Necker

Many good musical recordings require patience - what sounds like Monkees
outtakes upon the first listen often can wind up sticking like white on rice
to your brain after the third or fourth listen.  Nowhere is this more
apparent than with symphonic progressive recordings and patience is no doubt
a virtue with Metaphor's Starfooted, the first outing for a former
Genesis tribute band and an overall excellent concept album.  What at first
sounds like cookie-cutter prog becomes much more interesting upon closer
inspection; Starfooted ends up being a very rewarding experience to
listeners who can devote a little temporal investment.

First let's discuss the whole concept behind the CD. Starfooted's
tells the story of Gnosticism, a belief system that is somewhat similar to
Christianity but with a few twists: the serpent was actually sent to HELP
Adam and Eve, but the god Yahweh conspires to keep them and all their
ancestors captive on the prison planet of Earth.  It's a very interesting
set of beliefs, and fortunately the band explains it all on their website
( - I'd suggest anyone who listens to Starfooted to
visit those pages to get the most out of the lyrical content of the album.
It's really quite fascinating stuff.

Musically, despite being an ex-Genesis tribute band, Metaphor is
surprisingly different from that band - they actually sound a little more
like Gentle Giant then Peter Gabriel and Co.  The one obvious exception of
this is Malcolm Smith's sharp and angular electric guitar playing, which
made me envision Steve Hackett in all his early 70's glory - complete with
coke-bottle glasses, bell-bottoms, and devilishly long hair. That having
been said, Metaphor does a great job of creating its OWN style, and avoids
being too derivate of their progressive ancestors.

Starfooted isn't likely to jump right out at you, and as a matter of
fact the CD itself takes a few tracks to really get going.  After a couple
of mediocre songs, the third track "Starfooted in a Garden of Cans" really
kick-starts the proceedings with a 15-minute showcase of fantastic
compositional skills that most certainly becomes more and more interesting
with repeated listening.  "In the Cave" and "Seed" are two more examples of
great lengthy compositions as well, the latter containing a extremely
pleasant acoustic guitar and vocal break that is sure to please even the
most jaded ear.  The only places where Metaphor stumbles a bit is where
vocalist John Marby tries to get a little too theatrical for his own good
with his singing - I'm sure the vocal "tricks" are supposed to inject an
emotional context into the lyrics, but they wind up sounding kind of silly.
Fortunately these occasions are few and far between, and Marby is an
excellent vocalist with a very soothing voice.

In the end, I'm certainly glad that the boys in Metaphor decided to give up
their tribute band roots; the personnel are FAR too talented to be stuck in
the rut of only performing other peoples' music.  Metaphor proves that they
are more than capable of flying on their own with Starfooted, and
have produced a very professional and satisfying piece of symphonic
progressive rock.  This is a band that I shall be watching with great
interest in the future, and I would urge that other proggies do the same!

For more information on Metaphor and the Gnosticism myths, surf on over to

- Michael Askounes (

1. Ladder From the Sky (6:53)
2. Chaos With a Crown of Gold (5:58)
3. Starfooted in a Garden of Cans (15:04)
4. The Illusion of Flesh (2:07)
5. In the Cave (9:13)
6. Seed (10:09)
7. The Bridal Chamber (2:42)
8. Don't Sleep (9:00)
9. Battle of the Archons (10:24)
10.Assumption (2:19)

Bob Koehler: Drums, Percussion
John Mabry: Vocals, Acoustic Guitar
Jim Post: Bass, Bass Pedals
Malcolm Smith: Electric & Acoustic Guitars
Marc Spooner: Bells & Whistles


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