Often it can be difficult to surmise the direct influential acts that impressed upon a band before its formation. Not always, but often. But every now and then, the succession line of a band is so blatantly obvious that it hits you like a ten-ton hammer between the eyes, and never more so has that been the case than with Boston’s instrumental progressive quartet, Myth of I.
Originally conceived in 2013, Myth of I’s foundations can be traced to the campus of Beantown's Berklee College of Music, where guitarists Tyler Fritzel and Jennings Smith met and became fast friends. Once the idea of forming a project was established, they quickly recruited their fellow Berklee attendees Matt Lippa on drums and Aodán Collins on bass, and Myth of I was born.
Following the success of their initial EP release, 2017’s The S.T.E.M., Myth of I attracted the attention of a then-still-fledgling label known as The Artisan Era, and following a couple years of writing, gigging, touring, recording, and mastering, Myth of I’s self-titled debut full-length is now available to the public through the rising label’s catalog.
Comprised of eleven original cuts, hearing Myth of I by the band of the same name is akin to hearing Animals as Leaders, Scale the Summit, and Cloudkicker all at once, with rhythm-breaking hints of Meshuggah and Vildhjarta scattered throughout, and interspersed shredding nuances á la Angel Vivaldi providing class and finish. Honestly, the influential overtones are so astoundingly overt that they smack you right in the mouth without even trying. Myth of I still provide their own flavor of instrumental progressive metal, mind you, but no self-respecting journalist should write a review of Myth of I without mentioning its stark resemblances in sound and production to these, the band's most obvious influences.
Mixed and mastered by the indomitable Jamie King (also: Between the Buried and Me, Scale the Summit, Wretched, Iapetus), Myth of I is textbook instrumental progressive metal deliciousness. Mind-bending, math-driven, and maniacal, change is the one and only thing on this album that remains constant. Changes in mood, changes in riffage, changes in feel, changes in rhythm... prepare your ears and your brains for all of these variations and more before checking out this excellent debut.
Be mindful not to skip “The Illustrator”, “Obsidian Vale”, “Needlepoint”, “The Maze”, or “Kodama” if you’re searching for the finest representations of the band’s sound on Myth of I, which you can listen to in its entirety simply by pressing play below! And of course, you can support Myth of I by procuring yourself a copy if you dig what you’ve read and are about to hear. Get on it! \m/
Rating: 9.25 / 10
Release Date: April 10th, 2020 (The Artisan Era)
Influences and Contemporaries: Animals as Leaders, Scale the Summit, Cloudkicker, Angel Vivaldi, Meshuggah, Vildhjarta, Between the Buried and Me, Polyphia