There are some debut albums that you put on, and you know that the band are already – as AC/DC might have put it – “there”. That is to say, they know what they want and know how to get it (and you can forget the “possibly”.

Sonic Circus are one of the prime examples. They’ve come out of a Land Down Under, with “Everything”, and although it’s their debut, you’ll be hard pushed to find anything so self-assured.

From the ashes of “Dead Star Renegade” (good enough to support Gilby Clarke and The Trews – MV Faves if ever there were) DSR also won awards in their homeland.

The key to this six tracker though, is that it has ambition and scope.

Prog rock in the literal sense that its prog and it rocks in equal measure, it is clear from the opening  of “Aeroplane” that SC have business to attend to that is very much on their own wavelength. Reminiscent of the fabulous Dead Letter Circus or Karnivool, this undulates between groove, soaring arena filling choruses and almost psych passages. But like the two bands I mention above, Sonic Circus understand hooks and there is plenty here to sink your teeth into.

Not least the sleazy riff of the outrageously funky “Over The Line” – which gets bonus points for slagging Facebook off, always a winner with me.

There’s an electronic side to the title track. There was a band at the turn of the century called Radiator that only I remember, I know, but their one album was full of stuff like this. Although in truth Sonic Circus are a one off, given they paint lush soundscapes, but still manage to make it sound like they’d get down in the trenches with you.

“The River” is a case in point, it touches on modern prog with its cold, clean guitar, but then, at a flick of  switch it turns into a rock n roll freak out. All in a song about mental health, that’s kind of impressive.

Actually, there’s nothing here that isn’t extremely impressive. There’s an AIC, touch about “Bringing Me Down”, but the lead guitar line is as low slung as it gets, while the last one, “Take Me Away”, is the most sprawling and feels like a proper journey.

And, “Everything” as a whole is just that – and given that it is only six songs it will be particularly interesting to see where they go next. This is more than just a hell of a first step, though. This is that rare thing. A “grower” of an album, but one that started off as being ace and just gets better each time you listen.

Rating 9/10

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