ALPHA MORTAL FOXTROT – SPECTRUM

Jakarta (Indonesia) based indie rock band, Alpha Mortal Foxtrot, have just released their latest single, Spectrum, and we’ve thoroughly enjoyed taking several listens here at the Send Me Your Ears studio today.

Spectrum is a song with the aim of supporting and raising awareness for people on the Autistic spectrum. Inspired Wiku’s intense desire to communicate with his son, Anantara, who is autistic. “He only started speaking when he was five years old, so this song was my promise to him that even if he couldn’t speak, I would try to learn his language,” says Wiku. “He’s not late, he’s just in his own time and space.” These are tender and emotional lyrics.

We absolutely loved the creativity and musicianship in this track, starting on a guitar riff and some beautifully bright drums, the 7/8 intro section really took our breath away. An interesting chord progression and even more interesting note choices ensured that all of us at the studio were absolutely gripped by this progressive rock track right from the start.

The song drops down in intensity for the vocals to come in and we’re treated to a toms heavy 6/8 section. There’s a gorgeous stripped down 4/4 section with some lovely modulating tremolo picking (rapid reiteration of same note) and telephone effect on the vocals. it was at this point that we decided to give up counting the number of time signature changes and just thoroughly enjoy the song (for several listens!)

Reminding us throughout of Coheed and Cambria or perhaps Dream Theater, Spectrum really is a work of art and a “must listen” for fans of this style of solo-heavy progressive rock.

The exciting and lengthy solo sections are cleverly written with some wonderful use of tremolo picking (rapid reiteration of the same note). The musicianship on display here is outstanding.

From a production perspective, we loved this track and we tried a few EQ adjustments as we listened. A boost around 80Hz and a cut around 120Hz seemed to fill out the kick and reduce the bass a little. A wide boost across the mids centred around 700Hz filled out the sound a bit more but there were places where it made the guitars feel a little too ‘honky’, particularly during the tremolo solo towards the end. The guitar in the intro sounded a little harsh to us, so we tried a cut between 2kHz and 2.5kHz.

Alpha Mortal Foxtrot’s latest single, Spectrum, is a stunning track with an important message. At 5 and a 1/2 minutes long, it may not be a candidate for commercial radio, but is a track which we believe will be lapped up by rock radio stations across the globe. Fantastic stuff!