Album review/Show preview: Tides of Man, Young and Courageous

The prog rock four-piece plays Orpheum on Friday.

After losing vocalist Tilian Pearson and parting ways with Rise Records, Tampa indie prog rockers Tides of Man elected to continue as an instrumental four-piece (guitarists Spencer Gill and Daniel Miller, bassist Alan Jaye and drummer Josh Gould) and self-produced their third full-length with funding from an Indiegogo campaign. The result, Young and Courageous, proves they made the right decision. 

The musicians know how to wring a lot of feeling from their instruments – urgency, melancholy, yearning, restlessness, gloom, hopefulness, joy. And they are tight, commanding and have audible chemistry. Dual guitars take turns laying down competing or corresponding passages; one may be dropping melodic chord progressions while the other rips through soaring solos, ala “Mountain House,” or both adopt metallic tones, but one plays distorted riffage while the other shreds ala “Drift.” The basslines groove, bound, pound or lead the fray in low-end thrust, while the drums supply a strong foundation of rhythmic momentum, quietly beating then roiling and churning as the songs build from serene and ambient to heavy propulsive peaks.

The centerpiece of the 11-track LP is “Eyes Like Strange Sins,” its melodic grooving bass and bright notes of guitar maneuvering into more energetic and insistent territories with powerful full-bodied instrumentals driving the song to its calm harpsichord-tweaked close. (Audio below.) Another seven-plus minute epic ends the set, “Measure Your Breath,” which ebbs and flows to its conclusion and features a swell of voices rising in a wordless chorus. (Critics’ Rating: 4.5 out of 5 Stars)

Tides of Man perform the entirety of Young and Courageous this Friday night at Orpheum, with three noteworthy local acts joining them on the bill.

Show details: Tides of Man with Goodnight Neverland, Europa, New Cathedral, Fri., July 18, Orpheum, Ybor City, 7 p.m., $10 in advance/$12 dos (all ages).