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Motion Turns It On

Motion Turns It On may have the most apt name in Houston: Their instrumental rock is both suffused with joyous motion and profoundly turned on. Rima stretches six songs into 33 minutes, wasting no time as a brief drum roll snappily introduces the title track's punky opening riff. The rest is like a fireworks display — explosive, unpredictable, electrifying and over far too soon. Barring ten-minute closer "Southern Diatribe," Rima is a rare prog record that demands very little patience of its listeners. MTIO's willingness to get right into things is both a hallmark of their music and one of their biggest strengths, as it gives their songs tremendous space to develop without becoming bloated and repetitious, as prog and post-rock so often do. "Spite­kyte" is one of the best examples, cramming four or five different fist-­pumping movements into five and a half minutes before dissolving in an intense freakout. Brisk pacing is hardly Motion's only virtue: The band plays supremely together, and they decline to give anyone the spotlight, instead arranging complementary riffs and textures into a dense mixture that retains surprising clarity. Considering instrumental prog's limited appeal, MTIO may have modest commercial goals, but artistically, the sky's the limit.

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