Aisles is a progressive rock band from Santiago, Chile. The band made two albums (“The Yearning” and “In Sudden Walks” ) that could be cataloged under the progressive sub categories Neo-prog and Art-rock with some jazzy elements of fusion. With their third album “4:45 AM” the band is now searching for and developing their own unique musical style.
Constanza Maulén - Vocals on “Sorrow”, “4:45 AM” and “Shallow and Daft”
StringQuintet on “Sorrow”, “Hero” and “The Sacrifice”:
David Núñez - Violin 1; Diana Brown - Violin 2; Valentina Maza - Viola; Alejandro Barria - Cello; Nelson Arriagada - Contrabass
For me the new album “4:45 AM” has two faces. In the first four tracks of the album the band is bringing us music with some Neo-prog, AOR and even Pop influences. The opener “4:45 AM” is a Neo-prog song with commercial vocal refrains. “Gallarda Yarura” an instrumental with rhythm changes and some nice guitar parts is more interesting. The band comes with some nice melodies. The Neo-prog song “Shallow and Daft” has even some Pop influences. To be honest ... this is not my cup of tea. “Back my Strength” has also some nice guitar parts but it is heavily influenced by AOR. It looks like the band is searching for an identity.
But then something is changing ... the music becomes more interesting and adventurous. In the ballad “The Sacrifice” we can enjoy nice acoustic guitar parts and delicate sung vocals. The band is even accompanied by a StringQuintet. For me the album starts just here. The band is showing us a glimpse of their own identity. “The Ship” is a short atmospheric bridge to the following track “Intermission”, an atmospheric and filmic instrumental with nice guitar parts. The way of playing reminds me sometimes of Allan Holdsworth. The music has some jazz fusion influences. The next track is called “Sorrow”. It is a beautiful ballad with acoustic guitars, the StringQuintet, delicate vocals and some great melodies. The combination of a StringQuintet and the classical guitar works very well. The slow opening of one of my favorite tracks “Hero” reminds me again of the jazz fusion work of Allan Holdsworth. The band is now displaying it's true progressive character. Beautiful atmospheric keyboard parts, great guitar parts and you can hear some nice keyboard and guitar solo's. The track has a beautiful classical ending with acoustic guitar and the StringQuintet. Another favorite is the last track “Melancholia”. A slow melancholic song with jazzy guitars that is slowly working towards a kind of climax. “Melancholia” includes nice drum work and some great melody lines.
For me the third album “4:45 AM” of Aisles is an album with two faces. After the first four songs, which have some Neo-prog, AOR and Pop influences, the album becomes more adventurous and progressive. I hope that the band will develop this further into an unique own style. You will get a fusion of Art-rock, classical music, jazz and progressive rock. The use of the StringQuintet in combination with the acoustic guitars works very well. It makes the music even more diverse. I also want to mention the beautiful vocal parts of this album. Aisles is a band with a lot of potential. I hope that the band musically can develop to the next level. The band has the potential for this.