Incident at Cima

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Given that Savage Republic's greatest strengths were their atmospheric instrumentals, guitarist Bruce Licher was wise to concentrate wholly on this direction on Scenic's debut. Better recorded and more melodic than previous Licher projects, there is a definitive cinematic scope to these dust-swept, minor-key compositions, which put his liquid, reverberant guitar to the fore. As with many all-instrumental rock albums, it doesn't always sustain interest; some of the pieces may strike some listeners as sketches (though none are sloppy). At its best, though, it's impressively haunting, with a slight post-punk feel that doesn't cater to bleakness.

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