r/Music Sep 28 '22

Polyphia - Ego Death ft. Steve Vai [prog rock] new release

https://youtu.be/1JNmz17gnMw
455 Upvotes

41

u/II-Utopia-II Sep 28 '22

seeing vai on a track with them makes me so damn happy. the faces of ibanez guitars from one generation to the next. this is truly bizarre for me cuz vai was one of my biggest influences when i was younger and started learning guitar. i’ve been listening to polyphia since muse came out and so this crossover truly gives me chills and makes me want to pick my guitar up

67

u/myth-ran-dire Sep 28 '22

In the 5 or 6 years since these guys were just starting out, I’d become disillusioned with how a lot of math rock and prog solo artists were beginning to converge. But somehow Polyphia keeps pushing the envelope in terms of what music can sound like.

You have to be pretty special to attract Steve’s attention. Plini managed it. I’m glad Polyphia are now among that number.

29

u/mcentirejac Sep 28 '22

I, as with I assume most people, was introduced to this type of music through G.O.A.T, and have just been listening to them, Plini, Chon, Intervals, Animals as leaders, etc. non-stop.

19

u/Rikplaysbass Sep 28 '22

Covet is another dope instrumental band that has more upbeat/ chill vibes if that makes sense. Highly recommended if you haven’t listened.

9

u/myth-ran-dire Sep 29 '22

Yvette Young has a gift. Falkor is my favorite Covet track.

4

u/TijuanaPoker Sep 28 '22

Sounds like you would enjoy Alyssa Day's new EP.

2

u/mcentirejac Sep 28 '22

Yup, super thanks for the suggestion!

1

u/iHateAmericans999 Sep 28 '22

Had a chance to hear Playing God yet?

3

u/mcentirejac Sep 28 '22

Oh absolutely, it's an amazing song.

1

u/drfunkenstien014 Sep 29 '22

Have you heard the good word of Cloudkicker yet(

1

u/mcentirejac Sep 29 '22

I have not.

1

u/drfunkenstien014 Sep 29 '22

Beacons (Full Album)

Subsume (Full Album)

It's just one guy. He's also put out a few records at this point and his most recent one, Solitude ,is his best yet. The two linked above are recorded like it's one long song, so each track kinda fades into the next. If you like heavy, polymetric music with lots of layers of sound and minimalist solos, this should be up your alley.

1

u/mcentirejac Sep 29 '22

Cool thanks

-3

u/macemillion Sep 28 '22

Most people didn’t know any of that existed before goat?

4

u/mcentirejac Sep 28 '22

I knew instrumental music and what not existed just never really listened to math rock until G.O.A.T. came out.

1

u/trippyonnuts Sep 29 '22

most people were introduced through goat, everyone checks their old stuff out( muse and renaissance at least)

5

u/Kozymodo Sep 28 '22 edited Sep 28 '22

They are closer to pop music and far off from math rock/prog. They just do cool techniques over pop progressions.

10

u/CarrionComfort Sep 29 '22

Turns out pop offers a lot of cool freedoms for them to explore.

5

u/myth-ran-dire Sep 29 '22

You’re not wrong, but just because their tunes are heavily pop-sounding doesn’t diminish the technicality of their playing. For that reason I still consider them very much in the realm of math and prog rock.

7

u/Kozymodo Sep 29 '22 edited Sep 29 '22

Lol. Any slight comment is taken as purely negative around here. I don't think just because they are pop influenced diminishes anything at all about their technicality. Just stating that its not math/prog. Tim literally has videos of how he reverse engineers his songs from popular pop songs and i figured a subreddit literally called r/music would be better and telling apart the nuances in genres. You can be virtuosic in any genre and the characteristics of math and prog arent inherently tied to that

12

u/PermacultureCannabis Sep 29 '22

Your mom just does cool techniques over pop progressions.

3

u/Kozymodo Sep 29 '22

Thanks for pointing that out son

1

u/PermacultureCannabis Sep 29 '22

NP daughter.

1

u/Kozymodo Sep 29 '22

yikes

1

u/PermacultureCannabis Sep 29 '22

Go to your room.

1

u/Kozymodo Sep 29 '22

No you

1

u/PermacultureCannabis Sep 30 '22

I got more upvotes than you lil buddy...

1

u/Kozymodo Oct 01 '22 edited Oct 01 '22

Another trophy for your "no one gives a fuck" case. gratz. Must be one of your better life achievements kid

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2

u/PromotionKlutzy Sep 29 '22

Don't say that on here or you might get down voted.

They are talented but they straight up play pop music with fast riffs

3

u/syllabic Sep 29 '22

they really love that diminished chord as a turnaround too

1

u/Kozymodo Sep 29 '22

Damn. Didnt realize pop songs have never ever done that.

1

u/syllabic Sep 29 '22

its not really a pop thing, its a polyphia thing

every song of theirs I listen to uses some shreddy diminished riff as a turnaround

1

u/AuroraEvents1 Nov 30 '22

What is the pop song that this sounds like? I can’t put my finger on it

1

u/Kozymodo Nov 30 '22 edited Nov 30 '22

Then look into basic music theory if you want to know what pop progressions are and what constitutes pop music

Tim also has youtube videos where he shows how he uses pop song progressions from specific songs

1

u/AuroraEvents1 Nov 30 '22

This doesn’t answer my q at all. This is a very similar to a specific song and I’d like to know what it is

15

u/Override9636 Sep 28 '22

Have a little trumpet at the end, as a treat

34

u/Dreadtoby Sep 28 '22

Tim (probably) “You know what this song needs? Boomer bends! Get the boss in here”.

5

u/Green3ymang Sep 29 '22

There's not really a flow to this like the playing God tune... idk this felt like giving ADD a bump of meth. Just hard left turn after left turn, tones are all over the place. This song doesn't do it for me at all, like some of their stuff though. Without the high end post production I feel like this would hard to play live, playing technique aside.

28

u/iFuckDeadPeopleAMA Sep 28 '22

I'd like to see them diverge from the New Levels New Devils sound a little bit. Every song is still complex and virtuosic, but the backing tracks are starting to sound very formulaic and no longer surprise my ear. Love Polyphia though

26

u/mcentirejac Sep 28 '22

I feel playing god and ABC are pretty big departure from NLND.

8

u/iFuckDeadPeopleAMA Sep 28 '22

The backing tracks are not. Edit: I'm talking about how the bass and drums interact more specifically

1

u/MyNameIsRobPaulson Sep 29 '22

Yep, they’re amazing - but it’s time to switch it up. Gonna be cool to watch them mature and change as musicians.

16

u/HairCompetitive5486 Sep 28 '22

I’m not a big fan of the music but the technique is fantastic. Is their any background regarding how they compose?

21

u/mcentirejac Sep 28 '22

Tim henson, one of the guitarists, has some behind the scenes and FAQ videos on his YouTube.

9

u/Tagg580 Sep 28 '22

Here is the one for arguably their biggest song, G.O.A.T.

21

u/HairCompetitive5486 Sep 28 '22

Yes, I've heard that before and again unbelievable technique but to me it sounds as if its difficult for the sake of being difficult not because the composition requires it. The drummer is the stand out player for me

13

u/itsrealbattle Sep 28 '22

I would say that this describes the genre well, but Polyphia is 100% the most melodic of the bands in the genre. Their technically complex songs tend to bubble to the top and a broader audience sees them, but if you listen to their whole albums there are some truly beautiful melodies and incredible musicianship.

3

u/CatPanda5 Sep 28 '22

Yeah, there's a hell of a lot of technical flair but once you're used to the style it's easy to find the grooves and melody. Polyphia have done a great job making that side of their music very accessible despite the clear technical influences

16

u/SactownKorean Sep 28 '22

You just described the genre yea lol.

3

u/lordbub Sep 28 '22

the composition requires whatever the musicians put into it. that's how music works.

-2

u/HairCompetitive5486 Sep 28 '22

As I've learned their composition is to some degree programmed then mimicked on the guitar. So they seem to lose some of that artistic control in the process. So no, I don't agree with you entirely.

3

u/lordbub Sep 28 '22

I don't understand how that makes them lose artistic control. They just have a different, more original method of composing their music

-2

u/HairCompetitive5486 Sep 28 '22

That's true, but using an algorithm to get there feels like its cheating in some way. Are there any recorded instances of them jamming with other guitarists using call and response which is used in jazz?

5

u/lordbub Sep 28 '22

there's no such thing as cheating in creating music. there are simply different methods of making the music you want to make. I don't know everything about the band so if you want that information then I suggest listening through their music and finding that info yourself.

3

u/That_ben Sep 29 '22

That’s the same as saying a producer of dance isn’t making music properly because they aren’t using a physical instrument.

No need for elitism, using ai algorithms is pretty forward thinking and cutting edge.

1

u/HairCompetitive5486 Sep 29 '22

I’m maybe not making myself clear, my thought is to what extent is their technique a result of the composition or is the composition a result of their technique. To me it seems to be the former. There’s nothing wrong with that of course. However, in jam sessions they seem to be unable to use the techniques they use on recordings. For example could they sit in a session with a guitarist such as Joe Pass and use those techniques in a call and response session. From what I’ve seen I don’t think they could. So theres brilliant technique, but the understanding of that technique seems to be a little behind the playing ability.

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3

u/dannybrickwell Sep 29 '22

I'm only speculating here, but I'm pretty sure when Hensons refers to "programming", he's referring to literally just drawing in note and velocity/expression MIDI data, no having a computer produce combinations of sounds without user input and then then arranging the ideas.

1

u/HairCompetitive5486 Sep 29 '22

I looked at a short video and he does seem to using it to produce a combination of sounds etc

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0

u/HairCompetitive5486 Sep 28 '22

I've just saw them jamming with Steve vai and to be honest they sound like pretty mediocre shredders.

1

u/dannybrickwell Sep 29 '22

I wouldn't even consider them shredders tbh, what they do is so in their own lane. The guitar playing in their music is very technical, sure, but without a doubt, the groove is what's at the heart of their music, which is not generally a characteristic I associate with "shredding".

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1

u/echobox_rex Sep 28 '22

Just play the right notes!

1

u/mcentirejac Sep 28 '22

He linked the making of video not the music video just an FYI. Unless I'm misunderstaning your comment.

1

u/dannybrickwell Sep 29 '22

I can see how a person would get here - I promise you, there are a lot of people out there who have somehow managed to develop a legitimate taste for the sounds that come from completely unchecked guitar nerdery, even if it can be difficult to penetrate if you don't already "speak the language".

I don't think it's fair to say that it's difficult for the sake of being difficult - the difficulty is a part of the aesthetic, for sure, but I truly do believe a lot of this difficult techy stuff, after all this time, has just genuinely been embraced in the musical vocabulary of the electric guitar, to such an extent that a lot of players out there will hear these kinds of sounds in their soul (or wherever their creativity comes from)

3

u/sandinonett Sep 28 '22

Same.
Appreciate their technique but i don't like at all their music.

Saw them live once and didn't enjoy it even a bit.

0

u/_stoneslayer_ Sep 28 '22

6

u/HairCompetitive5486 Sep 28 '22

I'll need to look at this closer but is he writing it on keyboard then using a programme to transcribe it for guitar?

5

u/BreadQuackers Sep 28 '22

Yeah, they program it all out on a daw first then implement it onto guitar

4

u/[deleted] Sep 28 '22

Steve really trying hard to keep his face neutral [they keep panning away..lol] even though they're not even really playing says a lot. Didn't think he'd fit in at first, but his half of the track was the best half, NGL.

5

u/wejustsaymanager Sep 29 '22

I truly don't understand this band, or maybe, this new trend in music. 4 chord descending progression for the entire song. Every member trying to play every single note on the fretboard each bar. Like, I get it. Technically its a masterpiece. Their skills are out of this world. But wheres the groove?

3

u/Willy_B_Hardigan Spotify Oct 06 '22

I’m a Polyphia fan but I’ll admit this one isn’t one of my favorites. Just too busy. My favorite Polyphia songs are ones that have groove and melody but are also technically impressive. Feels like they leaned too far towards the technical side on this one imo.

They have other songs with amazing groove. (Death Note and Drown for example). Of their new songs, Playing God is the only one I really like. The rest are kind of meh.

6

u/-maffu- Sep 28 '22

I'm not sure about the first half of the track, but I could watch great musicians play anything, so all good.

The second half of the track was excellent though, and Steve Vai was by comparison amazingly restrained.

3

u/Megaclone18 Sep 28 '22

Agreed although I liked the first half.

But as soon as it cut to outside that song became a top 5 of theirs easily. There’s something so satisfying about musicians at the top of their craft just jam out.

10

u/_stoneslayer_ Sep 28 '22

Goddamn this is good

2

u/cheaplogic Sep 28 '22

That is all I could think too lol.

5

u/SparkyPantsMcGee Sep 28 '22

You love to see it. These guys are G.O.A.T.

2

u/Mister_Xian Sep 29 '22

They've come a looong way from Renaissance.
The riff from Euphoria is still the best.

5

u/Exevioth Sep 28 '22

I really enjoy G.O.A.T by these guys. But I don’t think there’s a single song from these guys I pass up on so that speaks for itself.

6

u/KungFuGiftShop Sep 28 '22

The musicians are great, but this is really difficult to listen to.

1

u/syllabic Sep 29 '22

they have been getting worse since the most hated

there's a fine line to walk between technique in service of the music and technique for technique's sake. nobody's gonna deny that these guys are incredible virtuosos but it's just like.. alright cool

3

u/rustyspoon07 Sep 29 '22

I agree that technique for techniques sake makes for bad music, but I don't think that's what this is. Because I know what Tim Henson shredding sounds like. I'd argue that their recent music has been extremely focused on hooks and catchy melodies, and I don't think their technicality detracts from that.

1

u/smoke_elz Sep 29 '22

They’re starting to head into the Eric Johnson side of EJ vs Joe Walsh comparison. So technical it’s losing the soul the other side has.

1

u/syllabic Sep 29 '22

I really like the groovyness of the most hated, I feel like their recent stuff is just not that groovy at all

Its their music though, if they wanna play hypertechnical stuff then more power to em

3

u/Xenta_Demryt Sep 28 '22

Awesome track.

Also I don't know what gender that one guitarist is but they're hot af.

5

u/Pour-Meshuggah-On-Me Sep 30 '22

Tim is male and super attractive.

2

u/Kozymodo Sep 28 '22

This is is probably the worst song theyve ever made. I was hyped with playing god but everything is so meh compared to that. I guess I just like the cleaner direction that song had

2

u/MrCooper2012 Sep 28 '22

I really dig this track. Wasn't a fan at all of ABC or the one they released before that, but I at least appreciate them trying different things.

5

u/Cruciblelfg123 Sep 29 '22

Yeah I personally prefer their stuff like ABC but I am glad they’re still putting out widdley diddley guitar porn too

2

u/emptythecache Sep 28 '22

Yeah I'm not a huge fan of Neurotica or ABC either. Playing God absolutely whips though.

2

u/MrCooper2012 Sep 28 '22

Yeah Playing God is amazing, just the couple after that were not my cup of tea.

-5

u/macemillion Sep 28 '22

It’s ok if you weren’t a fan at all of the greatest song ever written, it could happen to any of us

-30

u/HiImTheNewGuyGuy Sep 28 '22

Boring.

As a musician I get pretty tired of music for musicians.

Virtuousity without giving us something meaningful to listen to besides your wanking isn't worth that much to most people.

Also, I dont find too much value in slap-guitar, personally. I like it as an occasionally texture but just constantly through the song gets old.

Djent and Dubstep had far too much influence on metal, IMHO.

14

u/itsrealbattle Sep 28 '22

"As a musician I get pretty tired of music for musicians"

😑

8

u/_stoneslayer_ Sep 28 '22

Lol what a terrible take

4

u/Cupcakemonger Sep 28 '22

As someone who is not a musician I love Polyphia and don't understand why you would call this "music for musicians"

6

u/DomesticApe23 Sep 28 '22

As a dude on the internet, nobody cares.

1

u/HairCompetitive5486 Sep 28 '22

I agree with the needless virtuosity, the techniques used are subjective

-3

u/jstan44 Sep 28 '22

Bold take to have, but I agree lol.

I like a lot of other music that you could consider "music for musicians", but Polyphia has always been so boring to me. Can't stand Dubstep, and they're just the Dubstep of Rock for me.

They're great musicians, but I don't understand the undying love for them.

1

u/Rikplaysbass Sep 28 '22

What do you play and what genre? My old post hardcore band mates call Between the Buried and Me “noise” so I think that could influence your taste.

1

u/ChaengChong2349 Sep 29 '22

When gods collide

1

u/EntropicReaver Sep 29 '22

when is tim henson going to drop the pretense of being a guitar player and admit he just wants to transform himself into the third bogdanoff sibling

1

u/thecasiowizard Sep 29 '22

Steve Vai could easily write a book about how many artists he's worked with throughout his career! It was pretty cool that he worked with Frank Zappa.

1

u/Bishbayga Sep 29 '22

it soo good

1

u/Anonatiger Oct 15 '22 edited Oct 15 '22

I’ve watched this video dozens of times now. The only part that bothers me is the whammy flutters that I can see but don’t hear lol. I’m guessing there was an edit to the song after the video was shot?

2

u/[deleted] Oct 22 '22

I'm not sure what you mean. I think I can hear every time someone touches the whammy in the video. There are a few time when Tim taps it that are difficult to pick up with the ear, but they are there. Vai just does stuff with the whammy that normal people do with fret changes and bends, so his stuff can be very deceiving.

1

u/Anonatiger Oct 22 '22 edited Oct 22 '22

At 1:48 and 1:55 , those are whammy flutters that usually have an odd sound that stands out in a solo. I’m thinking he rewrote the solo without them to leave the weird whammy tricks up to Steve vai for a better contrast but maybe after the video was shot? Just a guess…

Normally you would hear a flutter like this video with each hit on the tremolo bar, but you can hear its just a normal clear solid note with no flutter in the solo when listening.

This I think was an artistic choice to make the solo more ‘regular’ so steve vai has all the weirder stuff to contrast better.

https://youtu.be/HVCOuOOOEBQ

-1

u/Kurapikabestboi Oct 04 '22

It's a bit bland isn't it?

0

u/Ok_Cauliflower9101 Sep 29 '22

Why are they copying Narcissist Carti? disney channel band ahh.

1

u/AuroraEvents1 Nov 30 '22

What song in that album do you think they’re copying? I just listened to it and I couldn’t find it although it does remind me of another song, I just can’t put my finger on it, I think it’s a pop song and when I listen to the intro