Breathtaking sounds move effortlessly throughout the latest album from London based prog outfit Haken. Where Affinity displays a natural ability to affect the mind and mood in a plethora of well thought out features and forcing a different stroke unto the prog rock paradigm. The new addition to their discography takes the demise of prog rock in the 1980’s and reimagines it with fresh ideas.
There’s a folk saying that fashion folds in on itself every thirty or so years. On Affinity it’s prevalent where there’s nice whammy moments bend pitch like time in a wormhole. Only to then bring it back to ground zero and with roaring riffs brandishing blast beats that seem like an intermediate CGI fast travel segue on 35mm film. The progressive rhythms are left intact however embellished they become.
Yet Affinity has its namesake firmly in 1980’s. The synths are thematic to that fine era and feel cool – it’s a crying shame that it doesn’t come with a set of Don Johnsons’ sunglasses. With riffs that ride between the temporal zones there’s no energy crisis in the vigor it exudes, coming out hot and heavy with funky solos that add spark to an already bright parade.
While Affinity is a firm and powerful album, it has aspects that divulge more character than it initially betrays with catchy computer generated sounds. The sci-fi insets, accurate in their authenticity, can hold your attention but the spin comes from a more human than human instrument. Offering beauty like the night in its affluent use of vocal melodies that are sweet enough to lullaby.