The first ingredient required for successful progressive rock is for the artists not to disappear up their collective anuses. Leading on from this, the second factor is melody. Eyestrings, from Detroit, have partially excelled in these criteria. Clocking in precisely at ten minutes, the opening 'Recovery' begins brilliantly with the first half taken up with an early-Genesis style pastoral tune but then meanders confusingly into multiple directions. The more consistent 'Dead Supermen' is one of the most accessible efforts; over the course of six minutes the music stays focused to a highly addictive melody and its ironic lyrics reveal some clever rhymes ("Reaching a death far before the last breath... Cruelly impeached from the heights that were reached"). But there's a difference between clever and "clever clever", proved by the wayward riffing of 'Funnel', meanwhile 'Slackjaw' features a vocal so guttural and ugly it almost seems to be a parody. Relief is provided by the witty and also rather catchy 'Just A Body' boasting a chorus not so far removed from Mungo Jerry. Deserving of special mention, 'Nothing' is a fine wistful lament revealing the softer side to Eyestrings. Throughout it is easy to imagine that this record could have been made thirty years ago in prog rock's heyday; so as flawed as it is impressive, 'Burdened Hands' sums up the genre in a nutshell.