Issue 2020-091: Progtober 2020, Day 21 — Lufeh


October 2020 sees the 25th anniversary of DPRP.

A quarter of a century of uninterrupted reviews, interviews and features across the progressive genre is quite some landmark. To celebrate the occasion, we shall publish one review edition every single day during this month - 31 editions!

Welcome to Progtober!

In addition to our usual in-depth, independent reviews, our team has compiled a collection of interviews, artist features and several of our ever-popular Duo and Round Table Reviews. Over 40 different albums will be covered.

As ever, thank you to all our readers for your ongoing support, as well as all the artists and labels who create the music we love, and not forgetting the hundreds of people who have written and contributed to this website over the past 25 years.

Lufeh Batera — Luggage Falling Down

Lufeh Batera - Luggage Falling Down
Country of Origin
USA
Year of Release
2020
Time
33:35
Samples
Find My Way (4:25), The Unknown (3:36), Doors (4:06), Trial Of Escapade (4:24), My World (4:52), End Of The Road (4:05), Escape (4:03), The Edge (4:04)

Lufeh Batera is a Brazilian drummer with "a successful career performing with many local bands and artists". In 2008 he recorded his first solo album, Drummed In Classics, which combined classical pieces with progressive rock drumming. Having moved to the United States in 2014, the second album to bear his name showcases his drumming within a heavy-prog band format.

Luggage Falling Down will be a pleasant surprise for those who enjoy their prog on the heavy side, with occasional flourishes of metal, plenty of instrumental workouts, short song formats and a strong foundation in jazz. The eight songs are technical, energetic and always seeking a melodic hook.

Lufeh, guitarist Teo Dornellas, bassist Duca Tambasco and Gera Penna (keyboards) lived together for two weeks throughout the recording process. Having lost their original singer a month before recording began, Dennis Atlas was a local vocalist brought in to complete the line-up. Despite their short time together, the sprightly live videos recorded to help promote the album, show that this is an incredibly tight and talented unit.

Lufeh promo photo, courtesy Lufeh's official Facebook page.

The band's biography suggests a blend of Rush, Dream Theater and Brazilian music. I can sense the Brazilian inspiration though the energetic rhythms. I am struggling to get much of a Rush/Dream Theater vibe, mainly as the jazz flavour is far stronger, and the metal much lighter. A more jazzy The Flower Kings would be a better comparison.

Singer Dennis Atlas has a good sense of melody, and his main job in a Styx cover band shows he has the range and melodic sense for this type of music. Personally I find his tone, and the rather thin production of the vocals, not quite to my liking.

Opener Find My Way is a fabulous track but all the songs are of a consistent quality. The album needs stronger hooks, both vocally and instrumentally and I'd like to hear what they could do if a few of the tracks were extended beyond the four/five minute mark. However this is an impressive opening statement by a band I shall keep an eye on.

Andy Read: 7.5