Where 2016's Cyclicality Between Procyon And Gomeisa on Dekmantel was a sprawl of styles, veering from atonal noise to plush jazz-funk, the focus on Metaphors is much sharper, and better for it. "Proem" is the LP's most striking track. It channels the twee fantasies of prog rock in its warbling lead solos while an arpeggiated thrum rumbles underneath. It would be easy to overdo such elements, but Vakula shows a light touch throughout. The album's cyclical motions elsewhere are even more subtle. The title track pivots around another motorik bassline as a vessel for filter-sweeping drones and light-footed vibraphones. It's a masterful exercise in repetition, all the more impressive because it remains fresh and engaging despite being 18 minutes long.
"Tale Of The Eternal Thought"'s two versions start from the same place and with similar ingredients, yet they end up being independent pieces. The atmospheric, trancey pulse of the first plots a long, winding path for pealing synths, tumbling congas and vibraphone melody. The "Different Version" uses the same refrain as a basis for an ambient piece punctuated by swirls of white noise and delay-soaked notes. If the LP bears traces of electronic music pioneers like Klaus Schulze and Manuel Göttsching, the tracks inhabit a fantasy land of Vakula's own design. From the opening strains of "Smooth Movement," it's clear he intends to take you somewhere far away. You'll feel wonder and optimism for the journey ahead.