Chimp Spanner is the prog-metal solo project of guitar virtuoso Paul Ortiz. While many put him in the category of “djent”, Chimp Spanner has been active since 2004, well before djent truly got popular. Is pigeonholing him into this category really warranted at this point?
“All Roads Lead Here” is proof that while Ortiz has taken some influences from the djent movement, he clearly is much more than just that. The first track “Dark Age of Technology”, especially, blends a darker, djenty sound with the exhibition of some skills when it comes to more melodic songwriting.
The EP then launches into an arc of songs called “Moebius”, with three movements each differing a little stylistically. “Part I” has a very thick, polyrhythmic, djenty sound to it whereas “Part II” is just as heavy but more varied and has some pretty jazzy chords that spice things up.
“Part III” adds more jazz and electronics to the mix, and honestly sounds quite a bit like something that might come from Animals as Leaders. The EP ends with “Cloud City”, an aptly-named track with some airy synth notes that lighten up the chugging of this release as it fades to its ending.
Overall, this is a quite solid release, and Chimp Spanner does his guitar skills proud.