After a couple of excellent singles like Up In The Air and The Field and a critically acclaimed full-length debut, The Maestro’s Tale, Washington-based progressive rock quartet What Strange Beasts returns with another fine piece of sonic artistry. Cat’s Paw is their first single this year that comes as more than an appropriate continuation of their previous works. Of course, as a progressive rock band, What Strange Beasts continuously upgrade their sound, and that’s the case with this composition as well. You’ll notice how contemporary and retro sonic maneuvers collide in this divine prog-rock track, but there are some other delicacies you’ll stumble upon along the way. The band also included some of the finest properties of psychedelic rock, hard rock, and indie rock, but don’t be surprised if you notice some other ingredients as well.
Cat’s Paw commences with calm, pleasant, arpeggiated chord progressions that serve as such a perfect overture. However, the band quickly transits into heavy riffs decorated with thoughtfully assembled keyboard melodies. The ambient sequences lurk around in the mix, so the sound is rich, dense, and complex from scratch to finish. Of course, the bass guitar supports these orchestrations with equally delicate low-end tones, assembled to fit nicely into the whole prog-rock scheme. Nothing would sound so profoundly dynamic without flawlessly performed rhythmic sequences decorated with many accentuations, enhancements, fills, and other percussive acrobatics. The vocal harmonies, back vocals, and singalongs come like a cherry on top, and each singing segment carries a dosage of old-school prog-rock vibes. Each member plays a significant part in this sonic equation, which sounds delightful from beginning to end. What Strange Beasts nailed once again, and Cat’s Paw will be right up your alley if you’re profoundly into prog-rock music. The single is available on all streaming platforms.