Turning Virtue are a progressive rock band out of Buffalo, New York. The four-piece is led by David Karczewski (aka Davey K), whose vocals suggest the pleading tenor of Maynard James Keenan, and his band’s sound falls generally within the same progressive metal realm as Keenan’s Tool.
Turning Virtue has a lushness not found in the Tool canon, though, one defined by remarkable harmonic resolutions and soft guitar textures that are both more reminiscent of Porcupine Tree. That lush character is, at least in part, the handiwork of Tim Palmer (Porcupine Tree, Pearl Jam, U2, David Bowie, Robert Plant), a master engineer whose fingerprints are all over Turning Virtue’s new release, A Temporary Human Experience.
There’s a certain majesty in ATHE that seeks to draw listeners in. The tension in “Box of Disappointment.” The bevy of effects used in the background of the fittingly titled “Random.” The guitar counterpoint in the longform, psychedelic slow-burner and final track of the record, “Salty Tears.” A Temporary Human Experience is filled with complex harmonic progressions that wend with a good sense of narrative, and each is negotiated masterfully by Mark Zonder, whose work with Warlord and Fates Warning have won him a reputation as virtuoso drummer. The nine-track record is a project that attracted some of rock’s best, and it did so for a reason.
On A Temporary Human Experience, it’s hard to tell where Palmer’s genius stops and Turning Virtue’s songwriting begins, but at the end of the day, does that really matter? Either way, the record is as thoroughly professional as its collaborators and a fine testament to Turning Virtue's progressive rock forebears. Check out lead single, "Transcend," above.