Edition 392 of THE PROG MILL for Progzilla Radio (612 in total), first broadcast Sunday 19 November 2023, is now also available to stream on demand or download. This week I’m joined by Richard Swan of The Progressive Aspect who reviews ‘8mm’ – the new album by Fish on Friday, and our fun quickfire quiz […]
Canadian prog metal multi-instrumentalist reflects on the rise of AI with jam-packed third album
Pullquote//“Whatever happens when the album comes out, I’m not going to have any regrets.”
Body//“The feeling that I wanted to come out of this album was that I wanted, absolutely under all circumstances, to love every second of passing music,” Pomegranate Tiger mainman Martin Andres says. “I can say with a smile on my face that I think I’ve accomplished that job. I tried to not follow any rules, I went full prog, I try to tell a story with every song, I try to be as creative as possible. If five people listen to it, or five million, I literally did everything I can and there’s no more that I can do.”
He seems exceedingly satisfied after putting his all into his prog metal project’s instrumental third album //All Input Is Error// – and it’s pretty clear to see why.
Some sections are reminiscent of stalwarts like Animals As Leaders and Between The Buried And Me, but Pomegranate Tiger crams in enough detours to make it their own.
Jagged riffs and drum hits are chucked around like hand grenades, but electronic flourishes and some spaced-out downtime avert the sensory overload.
It really is Andres’ baby; the Canadian composed everything and recorded guitar, bass and drums, with only additional guitars, violin and production (Marty Bak) coming from elsewhere.
The roots of this particular pomegranate tree stem back to 2010, with Andres – a proficient drummer who was raised on classical guitar before going to music school – putting together a band to provide an avenue to express himself.
An early highlight was touring with Protest The Hero, with Pomegranate Tiger’s first album //Entities// (2013) – which featured Andres only on lead guitar – making an impact online before 2015 follow-up //Boundless// saw the musician take more control.
He then spent time writing for The Human Abstract before teaming up with globe-trotting prog metallers Oni.
The long story cut short is that Andres is back on Pomegranate Tiger duty, and he has propelled himself back into the project which remains close to his heart.
It can be hard to convey concepts through instrumental music, but the rise of artificial intelligence (AI) provides a theme for //All Input Is Error//, with the music often glazed with a tech feel.
“It seems like we’re creating some sort of god and nobody really knows the repercussions of it,” Andres says.
“What kind of world are we going to be living in when computers think they know better than we do?”
AI played a part in the album’s creation, though – from helping with the artwork and a music video to putting together paperwork.
With Andres stuffing so much effort into the new album, not too much thought has been given to what’s next; he might put together a live band if the right touring opportunity comes up, while educational videos could be in the offing too. But for now, the focus is firmly on the here and now.
“Part of this new record was injecting as much emotion and enjoyment from who I am and what I like to write, back into the music,” Andres says.
“At this point I know that whatever happens when it comes out, I’m not going to have any regrets.” POW
LINE-UP: Martin Andres (pretty much everything), Matt Shaheen (additional guitars), Marty Bak (producer)
SOUNDS LIKE: A whirlwind of futuristic prog metal that rarely lets up
CURRENT RELEASE: //All Input Is Error// is out now.
— Phil WellerFrom "Limelight - Pomegranate Tiger" Prog Issue 144 Reprinted with permission.