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Paul Ortiz unveils extensive 4 and a half minute demo “Aurora” from ‘Chimp Spanner III – The Album


The thousand yard stare of a man under the cosh

Only last week we were talking about albums we’re anticipating in 2014, and amongst those fifty mentioned was the promised forthcoming full-length from British multi-instrumentalist Paul Ortiz, AKA Chimp Spanner with a cheekily tentative title of Chimp Spanner III – The Album.

We heard towards the end of last year that Paul had handed in demo material to his label Basick Records, in the interest of being a bit more strict with himself, and we’ve now seemingly got a chance to hear what they heard, as a new track has surfaced by way of the Metal Hammer cover CD, now on the internet for your pleasure. It’s called “Aurora” and it sounds a little something like this:

Chimp Spanner’s work has always been very science fiction-influenced, and this track is certainly no different – specifically harkening back to the eighties. If you don’t catch a massive whiff of Harrison Ford flying over a futuristic Los Angeles, vis-a-vis Blade Runner, then you seriously need to catch up on your sci-fi.

Paul’s brand of instrumental prog is pretty recognisable at this point. His catchy, groove-heavy tunes are differentiated from the work of the likes of Ben Sharp/Cloudkicker et al with some great ear-catching leads amongst other things, which are on proud display here. You really can’t mistake Chimp Spanner for anything else, and he continues to mark himself as one of the leading musicians in the “bedroom djent” scene.

Chimp Spanner haven’t got much in the way of shows/tours announced at the moment, but the band – which also includes drummer Boris le Gal, Jim Hughes on guitar, and Monuments bassist Adam Swan – will be playing HRH Prog Festival at Hafan y Môr Holiday Park in Pwllheli, North Wales, on March 20th-23rd, with the likes of Fish, The Flower Kings, Pineapple Thief and Arcane Roots.