Haken - Affinity
Progressive Rock / Metal
Modern progressive metal band Haken consist of six young guys from London, England, and together they do a pretty great imitation of early 90’s Dream Theater. I am only partially kidding, of course — it has always been a bit of a contradiction that a music genre that supposedly champions change and evolution so often falls back on the same few signposts from the past — but Haken provide enough youthful energy to their brand of classic progressive metal that keeps the music vibrant and interesting. The album artwork, which is pretty damn great, is a bit of a red herring — there are a few electronic bits sprinkled here and there, but generally speaking what you get is good old fashioned prog metal with epic choruses, showoff instrumental passages and grooves in off-kilter time signatures. Miraculously, instead of sounding forced or humorless, there’s a sense of vigor and excitement that keeps things light.