So I’m about to review Deyss‘ At-King, one of the acknowledged lowlights of the entire history of progressive rock. I was poking around looking for stuff on similarly bad albums, and it struck me that we were all way too charitable in our reviews of Double Helix’s The Butterfly Effect. Cause that album is much, much, much worse than At-King ever gets. Looking back at those reviews, you can tell we were all straining to try not to be completely, disrespectfully insulting. Sean wrote a highly amusing summary of it to rec.music.progressive that’s much more the kind of thing I wish I’d written for my review:
With this one it’s really hard to know where to begin. It’s two female singers (one formerly of Solstice), one of whom has an alright voice and the other an almost unspeakably bad voice. They are backed by the finest in Casio equipment as they sing for over 70 minutes (it will seem longer) about outer space, wars with Martians or other compelling, relevant social issues. It’s about as DIY as it gets from a production and recording level, but in hands this inept it should have been a PSE (Pay Someone Else) release instead. To reinforce the sci-fi theme all the musicians have Star Trek titles like shuttle pilot or transporter chief. Just when you think it’s as bad as it can get it gets worse; if the song where one singer sings half-scales (i.e. tonic through dominant and then back down to tonic) above her comfortable range doesn’t kill you, the one sung in French will make you kill yourself.