Love, Fear And The Time Machine

Riverside's latest takes a bit of a swerve from their traditional sound.  Parts of the album bears the imprint of Mariusz Duda's solo work - its more laid back, more refined.  Other aspects of the album carry on with the sound that Riverside has developed over recent albums - chunky organ, trippy keyboard soloing and interstellar guitarwork.  This one is a grower.  At first listen it might not hit you but the more you scrape away at it the more you realize its dug deeper under your skin.

"For the past decade or so, Polish progressive rock/metal quartet Riverside set itself apart from their stylstiic brethren by offering distinguishing tones, mesmerizing atmospheres, and most importantly, remarkable songwriting. Sure, the band also infuses much of its music with the intricacy genre enthusiasts expect, but their melancholic, yet beautiful and earnest melodies and lyrics (credited mostly to singer/songwriter/bassist Mariusz Duda) have always come first. Perhaps nowhere in its discography is this more apparent than on their newest opus, Love, Fear and the Time Machine.

Although it features a few complex arrangements, the record is by far Riverside’s most straightforward and accessible collection to date, showcasing a proclivity for upfront compositions like never before. While this may disappoint fans who adore the group’s more tangential, frantic instrumentation, rest assured that the album’s stunning emotionality and breathtaking arrangements more than make up for it. Without a doubt, Love, Fear and the Time Machine features some of the most gorgeous, tragic, and ultimately inspiring pieces Riverside have ever recorded, making it another exceptional entry in an invaluable catalog.

According to Duda, the effort is a return to the softer, more ambient nature of Riverside’s debut, 2004’s Out of Myself. In fact, the foursome intentionally composed it “to combine the ‘70s and the ‘80s…[the songs] have never been so concise and to the point before.” Because of this new approach, the disc actually evokes Duda’s other project, Lunatic Soul, in subtle but substantial ways at times. Like almost all of Riverside’s previous works, Love, Fear and the Time Machine is also a conceptual record; specifically, it “talk[s] about transformation. About making an important, perhaps life-changing decision everyone has to make at some point in their lives…on the one hand, we’re excited by the change…[but] on the other, we fear the unknown.” Ultimately, the lesson to be learned from it is that “if we sometimes get lost in life, it is to go through something and be found again on the other side, to be reborn as someone better and more valuable.”

Fittingly, then, the sequence starts with “Lost (Why Should I Be Frightened by a Hat?)”, which is arguably its best track. Duda begins by reciting a philosophical recollection over a delicate ether of keyboards and bass and guitar notes. Afterward, he launches into a catchy and charming chorus: “Come follow me / We’ll go down / Where the river flows / One day / Just you and I will find a bridge / To another land”. Duda layers his voices too, making it even more gripping, and in-between his passages, guitarist Piotr Grudziński issues his signature soaring accompaniment as the composition evolves. Drummer Piotr Kozieradzki keeps things steady throughout, while keyboardist Michał Łapaj gets the spotlight during the final seconds. Ultimately, “Lost” exemplifies the magnificent succinctness that makes Love, Fear and the Time Machine distinctive in the Riverside canon.

Later on, “#Addicted” truly feels like a progressive rock take on the Cure in several ways, such as its dominant bass lines, starry guitar lines, and wistful singing which finds Duda channeling a silky falsetto he’s never really attempted before. There’s also a brief acoustic guitar arpeggio at the end that’s very enjoyable. Lyrically, it serves as a commentary on how social media can transform people into egocentric users who base their self-worth on their digital populiarty. In this way, both its lyrics and music find Riverside stretching slightly beyond its comfort zone, but the result is undeniably, well, addictive.

“Caterpillar and the Barbed Wire” feels more traditional, with Duda’s sorrowful confessions and counterpoints perfectly complemented by sharp guitar riffs, aching solos, enveloping percussion, and a moving layer of synthesized splendor. Honestly, it’s like a heartbreaking and somewhat more colorful missing track from Shine of New Generation Slaves, whereas “Saturate Me” contains the sleek yet eccentric tones and virtuosic yet blunt balance that made up the best moments on Rapid Eye Movement. Of course, its sad ponderings, such as “Am I Invisible? / Or alive? / I don’t want to feel like I’m no one anymore”, are archetypal Riverside sentiments, and the interlocking musical patterns (especially near the end) are equally touching.

The most commercial segment on Love, Fear and the Time Machine is surely “Discard Your Fear”; however, despite that typically negative connotation, the song’s approachability doesn’t get in the way of its worth. Rather, it’s uplifting message and relatively simple and familiar construction could earn Riverside an entirely new camp of fans. It’s actually quite cathartic, as is the dreamy and tasteful “Toward the Blue Horizon”, which begins and ends as a luscious ode (with lovely piano chords) while transforming into a progressive metal workout in the middle.

Both of the record’s final two pieces—“Time Travellers” and “Found (The Unexpected Flaw of Searching)”—are wonderful. The former is an exquisite acoustic ballad about past possibilities and the unforeseen future. Its winding melodies and spaciousness are the standout features, as the rest of the band lets Duda’s voice lead the way, resulting in a simple but commanding experience. In contrast, the latter is more elaborate, impactful, and conclusive, with a strong sense of closure and acceptance, as the speaker realizes the importance of his or her experiences, uncertainties, and decisions. The music builds with great pacing, adding more beautiful layers as the chorus (“It’s a lovely life / You have gone so far / Don’t give it up / Oh, it’s a lovely life / Gotta go with what you think is right”) repeats with sleek harmonies. By the end, listeners are left in awe, reevaluating their own sense of purpose and optimism.

Love, Fear and the Time Machine is likely the most polarizing record Riverside has made, as it could be considered both the band’s strongest and weakest full-length effort. Fans hoping for virtuosic jams and unexpected sounds won’t really find them here, while fans looking for more of Riverside’s token elegant instrumentation, affective melodies, and poetic, rich singing will be satisfied beyond measure. Either way, Love, Fear and the Time Machine definitely finds its creators reaching for new, if marginally different, heights, which is commendable in and of itself. Roughly ten years on, Riverside remains as special as ever, and Love, Fear and the Time Machine is, in several ways, its truest work of art." - Pop Matters

There are no review yet. Be the first!

Product Review

You must login or register to post reviews.
Laser Pic

customers also bought

SEE ALL
  • Now I've heard everything....Grave Digger's first album in two years is a concept work inspired by Richard Wagner's The Ring Of The Nibelungs.
    $14.00
  • First time officially released (and from master tapes to boot) for this rare British proto-prog album from 1969. Harsh Reality never hit the big time and as a result their one album for Phillips goes for mega-bucks these days. Musically its actually not bad at all. I'm reminded a bit of Procol Harum and maybe even a little bit of Salamander (OK maybe only a little bit). Some nice organ sounds but the real stand out is vocalist Alan Greed who really should have gone on to a much bigger career. Nicely done Esoteric job with hyper detailed liner notes and photos and 4 bonus tracks.
    $5.00
  • "Cricklewood Green provides the best example of Ten Years After's recorded sound. On this album, the band and engineer Andy Johns mix studio tricks and sound effects, blues-based song structures, a driving rhythm section, and Alvin Lee's signature lightning-fast guitar licks into a unified album that flows nicely from start to finish. Cricklewood Green opens with a pair of bluesy rockers, with "Working on the Road" propelled by a guitar and organ riff that holds the listener's attention through the use of tape manipulation as the song develops. "50,000 Miles Beneath My Brain" and "Love Like a Man" are classics of TYA's jam genre, with lyrically meaningless verses setting up extended guitar workouts that build in intensity, rhythmically and sonically. The latter was an FM-radio staple in the early '70s. "Year 3000 Blues" is a country romp sprinkled with Lee's silly sci-fi lyrics, while "Me and My Baby" concisely showcases the band's jazz licks better than any other TYA studio track, and features a tasty piano solo by Chick Churchill. It has a feel similar to the extended pieces on side one of the live album Undead. "Circles" is a hippie-ish acoustic guitar piece, while "As the Sun Still Burns Away" closes the album by building on another classic guitar-organ riff and more sci-fi sound effects." - All Music Guide
    $5.00
  • Hardbound mediabook edition with one bonus track."I haven't had anything similar on my musical plate for a while, so Gazpacho's eighth album Demon was an interesting, beautifully surprising and absolutely brilliant variation. Again Gazpacho mixes progressive sounds with electronic elements and folk instrumentation with the addition of dynamic riffing and amazing vocals. The outcome is a unique sound that is quite inimitable and rare to find. How much you enjoy the new record will mainly depend on how you respond to this incredible mix and the singing style used by the vocalist. Anyway Gazpacho rules, especially at night.I'm a great fan of these guys and for those of you that still don't know who they are, Gazpacho is a band formed in Oslo, Norway in 1996 by childhood friends, Jon-Arne Vilbo and Thomas Andersen, along with Jan-Henrik Ohme - later joined by Mikael Krømer, Lars Erik Asp and Kristian Torp; they released their debut album Bravo in 2003.Demon, the upcoming record, is a concept album based on the true story of a manuscript found in an apartment in Prague where the writer, a previous resident, had detailed his chase of an evil, “The Demon”. Demon is for sure full of emotion and humanity and the way the Norwegian band reproduces in music the diabolical story and the psychosis of the protagonist is wonderful.The story is told in four parts and it starts with 'I've been walking – part 1' and it couldn't start in a better low-key fashion way. There’s something disarmingly powerful about loud vocals from Jahn Henrik Ohme that add incredible depth to a song. The intermittent piano notes are just perfect and the delicate violin sound is like a nice shade of color you don't notice on painting but that painting wouldn't be the same without it. A great bonus.The second part of 'I've been walking' – that is the third track of the album – starts exactly where the first movement of the piece ends but adding a dark shadow to the overall atmosphere. There are still vocals but now are slower and they mix perfectly with the other instruments. The bass is gorgeous and the way the song turns into a more ambient and atmospherical dimension is great. It's such a damn good track and together, 'I've been walking' parts I and II, might be the best tunes that Gazpacho has ever written.The mix of sounds of the opening track changes completely in 'The Wizard of Altai Mountain' becoming electronic in the first part of the track and turning into a sort of gipsy or Yiddish sound in the second half. We are all crossing lands pursuing the demon.The story ends with 'Death Room' and the motifs of the 'The Wizard of Altai Mountain' come back like creating a circle with that song. Oriental sound, progressive rock and folk are all mixed together and the resulting fusion sound is incredible. I rarely make direct comparison among artists but this time I cannot avoid to think of Radiohead's music mixed with folk elements to create an intricate yet beautifully original tone. Other times they make me think of the Scandinavian prog-rock band Airbag but again Gazpacho find their way to be definitely unique.The story ends here and Demon too, a captivating and intriguing album that is absolutely brilliant. I like the way it flows song by song and the variety of sounds blended in it. Such experimentalism is the proof that the Norwegian guys are really talented and they deserve to be considered one of the best progressive rock bands on the scene today.Demon is an album that requires time and patience to be understood and to gain the listener's estimation and it will reward open minded audience. Play it in the dark to fully experience its great music." - Echoes And Dust
    $13.00
  • "Originally released in 1974, Slow Motion was another classic album in the catalogue of Welsh rock legends, Man. Touring extensively to support the record, Man delivered a stunning series of concerts and made a triumphant return to the USA early the following year. As part of Esoteric s reissue programme of the MAN catalogue we are proud to present the re-mastered album and with a selection of studio out-takes and four previously unreleased live tracks recorded in California in May 1975. With superbly re-mastered sound and lavish booklet with notes by Man s Deke Leonard, this is yet another essential release for fans of Man."
    $10.00
  • "Live In Tokyo is a live performance from November 14, 2012 at Zepp Tokyo for supergroup PSMS, which features drummer Mike Portnoy (Dream Theater, The Winery Dogs, Transatlantic), bassist Billy Sheehan (Talas, Mr. Big, David Lee Roth), guitarist Tony MacAlpine & keyboardist Derek Sherinian (Black Country Communion, Dream Theater, Billy Idol). This 95 minute concert showcases a wide range of instrumental performances from each of the members careers & collaborations. Included in the set are Shy Boy from Sheehan's band Talas, MacAlpine's The Stranger, Sherinian's Apocalypse 1470 B.C. and Dream Theater's A Change Of Seasons: The Crimson Sunrise."
    $8.00
  • "From the very first bars of music on Therion's fourteenth studio album, a grandiosely operatic opening to title track 'Sitra Ahra', you know that the Swedish symphonic metallers are back in business from the off after a three year wait since previous full length release 'Gothic Kabbalah'. And this first track is classic Therion - mid-tempo in pace; simplistic, yet effective, palm-muted heavy guitar riffs; operatic female and rockier male lead vocals interposed with passages sung by a mixed choir; orchestral instrumentations underlying the metal elements; and rich with melody throughout. It's the musical template they firmly established back in the day of 'Vovin', and dominated just about every composition on said release. However, over the years, the Swedes have stylistically progressed with their songwriting, diversifying into disparate musical territories whilst maintaining the essence of what one would expect from a Therion album. And that's just what you should expect with 'Sitra Ahra' as the classic sound inherent in the opening piece gives way to sonic diversification throughout on an album that twists and turns in the most pleasing of ways. Some, I know, will be put off by the over the top choral/orchestral bombast, but these are the people who have perhaps never clicked with Therion's aesthetic. The band's art is supposed to be over the top in one sense - that is to say, in a theatrically exciting manner. For musical theatre is most certainly an apposite description of Therion's creative impetus, and one they fully embrace once again on 'Sitra Ahra'...unashamedly so, of which such conviction and serious intent is clearly audible in each of the songs. Take the epic ten and a half minute 'Land of Canaan' as a prime example, a track with its bell chimes and sitar Eastern-themed opening segueing into metal riffs with concomitant operatic, choral, and sung vocals, before guitar leads give way to a harmonica-led section, itself followed by a passage that sounds inspired by Belarusian folk...and so on, you get the idea. Lesser bands who play around with such a fusion of styles fail through their attempts whereas Therion are in no small way afraid to experiment, and it's experimentation that pays off as 'Sitra Ahra' is a riveting listen from start to finish. Not their greatest work to date, I must add, but an album that sees the Swedes at their experimental best, and one to please established fans and newcomers alike. Oh yes, and penultimate track, the succinct two and half minute 'Din', is perhaps the heaviest song they've written in a while, complete with blast beats, death vocals, and heavy riffing. So, has 'Sitra Ahra' been worth the three year wait? Most certainly so." - Metal-Discovery.com
    $6.00
  • This one is a real mindblower.  One of Italy's best bands, La Maschera Di Cera, has created a musical sequel to Le Orme's Felona E Serona.  I can't recall any band ever doing something like this.  Like all of the band's work it remains faithful to the "Rock Progressivo Italiano" sound.  Apart from cleaner sounding sonics it could have easily pass for somethining recorded in 1974.  The music does in fact pick up on some of the core themes and melodices from FeS.  You want 'tron?  You got it!  You want flute?  You got it.  To wrap the whole package together the band licensed the cover art from Lanfranco, the artist responsible for the art for FeS.  So it really does feel like a sequel.  Please note there are actually two versions of the album.  This is the English language edition - it features a slightly different mix than the Italian version.  Highly recommended.
    $18.00
  • "US band ODIN'S COURT have been around ever since 2001, with a good handful of productions to their name so far, and in terms of full length albums they have released six of them so far. Their most recent one, "The Warmth of Mediocrity", was issued through US label The RecordLabel.net's Progrock Records division towards the end of 2013.While this is a full length album, I guess the majority would really sort this one as a compilation rather than a bonafide studio disc, as the greater majority of the songs have been pulled from old releases. But as these songs have been both remixed and to some extent remade as well, due to the addition of Dimetrius LaFavors as lead vocalist, this really is a new album even if much of the material have been available in other versions previously.As far as style is concerned, Odin's Court is among those bands that venture back and forth across the border between the rock and metal part of the progressive universe, although the main emphasis appears to be on the latter of these. They explore, at least in recent years, a brand of progressive metal that explore the contrasts between grimy, gnarly dark toned guitar riff constructions and light toned, subtly exotic sounding keyboard textures, with ample room for movements of a more careful nature to alternate between the harder edged and more intense ones. The piano is employed for an additional delicate touch on several occasions, and what I presume to be digitally crafted orchestral backings also have their place in the material of this band. The dulcimer is also used to good effects to convey effects of a more careful nature within this landscape.From what I can recall of their older material, it would appear that their new vocalist is a good addition to this band. There are still some issues with the vocals however. That there are songs here not written with the new vocalist and his particular voice in mind is a fact, and that some of the vocal parts comes across as somewhat odd in structure and execution both is a detrimental detail at times. As is the band's slight tendency to hit off in a dramatic, technically oriented run with quirky staccato riff bursts in asynchronous patterns, although this latter aspect probably has more to do with personal taste and not quite as much to do with stylistic expression and structure as such.Personally I found the band to be most interesting when exploring territories of a more regular nature, with the remade version of Utopian Rust and the following instrumental Paradise Lost: Chapter 1 to be clear album highlights. The former a fairly traditional progressive metal creation sporting a fairly smooth, dark toned guitar riff and a fairly predictable but effective keyboard contrast as the dominant elements, with compelling harmony based guitar soloing and a nifty bass motif beneath that fits this song in this guise very well indeed. The latter of these two songs appears to be a case of progressive metal inspired by classical music, using orchestral details to supplement the guitars and organ that otherwise sets the mood and atmosphere. Opening and title track The Warmth of Mediocrity also warrants a mention, and again we're dealing with a more common variety of progressive metal with strong and distinct contrasts between guitar riffs and keyboards, majestic themes and a harmony based song in general expression and instrumental solo runs both.All in all a somewhat uneven production as far as I'm concerned, where the most experimental numbers also comes across as the least inspired of the lot. But when Odin's Court starts exploring a more common and predictable variety of progressive metal, then they are going strong with all cylinders firing in a fitting, majestic manner. A band and an album worth taking a look at if you're curious of a band that are at their best exploring traditional progressive metal Dream Theater style, while also having a go at assembling compositions of a more challenging nature that may not be quite as appealing - all of this very much depending on personal taste admittedly." - ProgArchives
    $3.00
  • Limited edition digipak."It is impossible to talk about experimental or avant-garde metal without mentioning this truly groundbreaking act: Meshuggah mix ultra-complicated rhythmic patterns with massive riffs and aggressive growls, combining Death Metal, Grindcore, Mathcore, Thrash and Progressive Metal to create their unique style. 'One of the ten most important hard and heavy bands', that's how the prestigious Rolling Stone Magazine describes Swedish sonic extremists Meshuggah."
    $14.00
  • Special edition CD/DVD set arrives in a digipak. The bonus DVD contains Steven Wilson's mixes: DTS 5.1, Dolby AC3 5.1 and 24/48 Stereo LPCM tracks (no idea why it's not 24/96). You also get a lot of documentary footage as well.This should probably suck but it actually doesn't. Because of a rift between Ian Anderson and Martin Barre this is being put into the market as "Jethro Tull's Ian Anderson". As you by now surmise this is a musical sequel to the original album. Again its a concept album updating us on the life of the main character Gerald Bostock. In live performance, Anderson's voice is shot. Within the context of the studio recording he plays it smart and never takes his voice where it doesn't want to go. Lots of Hammond organ and flute gives it the authentic 70s Tull flavor. Admittedly my expectations were pretty low but I have to say that this is far better than it has any right to be.
    $24.00
  • Liquorish Allsorts is the first solo album from Robert Webb, keyboardist for the legendary Britsh band England.  The set collects a variety of material from different era, dating all the way back to the early 70s and runs up to the present day.  Much of the material fits firmly in the prog category and some of it...not so much.  There are an endless number of musicians that contribute to the set including his former England bandmates.  Even Nicko McBrain is here!  Current musicians participating are drawn from Kenso and Resistor.
    $8.00
  • Remixed and remastered edition comes with a bonus CD with instrumental tracks and demos."Death was unquestionably one of the, and arguably the primary innovators of the death metal genre, but it was with this album that Death truly built their legacy as one of the greatest metal bands ever. This marked a new phase for Death, turning them from a band into essentially a Chuck Schulinder solo project, with every song on this album, and all future Death albums, being written by Chuck alone. This also marked the beginning of a series of releases of rare, extraordinary quality culminating in the release of the phenemenol Sound of Perseverance, which I consider to be the best Death album, and one of the few greatest albums ever recorded by anyone. If you haven't heard any Death, that is perhaps a better place to start, but this fantastic release still belongs in any metal fans collection, and is probably my second favorite Death album.Though Death was initially a pure Death metal band, this release and all future Death releases are better described as progressive death-thrash, perhaps leaning a bit more towards the thrash side. It's difficult to say why this is, other than to say that it feels more like thrash than death, to me anyway. Though it maintains much of the increased brutality of death metal, the riffs are very thrashy structurally, and they are always clean and crisp, not blurry and noisy as they tend to be in fast death metal. As a whole the riffs come a cross as a stylistic melding of those found in Reign in Blood and Beneath the Remains. Similarly, the drumming tends to be more thrashy, avoiding the blast-beat style drumming also common to death metal. Speaking of the drumming, Sean Reinert of Cynic is a fantastic drummer, though I prefer the later work of Gene Hoglan and Richard Christy. Sean doesn't seem to have as much personality stylistically as do those 2. To his advantage, he is probably the most accomplished double bass drummer I've ever heard, with even more extensive use of them than the latter 2. He can do them incredibly fast, but still mixes up the tempos more than any drummer I've heard. The rhythm guitar work is excellent as well, some of the fastest and most technically accomplished work around. Chuck seems unable to write an uninteresting riff. The solos/leads are good, but not great, and not nearly as good as they'd become just one album later. They still have their moments, particularly on the instrumental Cosmic Sea and and Lack of Comprehension. The bass is, sadly, pretty much MIA except on the aforementoined Cosmic Sea, where he does a nice, if short solo. Chuck's inimitable vocals fit the music very well, and he writes some thoughtful lyrics.The only real conceivable complaint against this album is that other than the relatively mellow instrumental it has little variety. The intensity rarely relents, and it tends to focus on the extremely fast tempos, though every track drops down to more mid-paced tempos at leat occasionally. However, though it lacks variety, it is very consistent, with the track quality ranging from very good to brilliant. The opener, Flattening of Emotions is probably my favorite track, and is the fastest and most unrelentingly intense track on the album, though it still has a very memorable chorus. The next track, Suicide Machine, is another standout. A bit slower, though it still knows when to kick it up to speed and its got another strong chorus. Lack of Comprehension is another speedy number, with some nice stuttering, jumpy riffs and short leads thrown in as well.(It also has the best solo on the album.) Anyway, enough about the individual tracks. They all rule.Thats really about all I got to say. Truly, a great metal album. Get it."
    $15.00
  • "Il Segno del Comando began life in Genoa in 1995 as a studio project with the aim of reproducing the sound and the atmospheres of bands from the seventies such as Goblin, Il Balletto di Bronzo or Jacula. In 1996 an eponymous album was released on the independent label Black Widow Records, inspired by the novel of the same name by Italian writer Giuseppe D'Agata. In 2001 the band released e second album, Der Golem, inspired by a novel by Austrian writer Gustav Meyrink. In 2013, after a long hiatus and with a renewed line up featuring founder member and main composer Diego Banchero (bass, keyboards, Theremin) along with Giorgio Cesare Neri (guitars), Maethelyiah (lead and backing vocals), Fernando Cherchi (drums, percussions), Maurizio Pustianaz (keyboards, piano, organ), Roberto Lucanato (guitars) and Davide Bruzzi (giutars), the band released another concept album inspired by a novel by Gustav Meyrink, Il volto verde (The Green Face). Many prestigious guests contributed to enrich the sound, among others Claudio Simonetti from Goblin, Gianni Leone from Il Balletto di Bronzo, Martin Grice from Delirium, Vinz Aquarian from Il Ballo delle Castagne or Sophya Baccini. The result is excellent and the music and lyrics perfectly fit the concept although I fear that is almost impossible to completely appreciate this complex work without having read the book that inspired it.The Green Face was written in 1916 and is set in a surreal Amsterdam post World War I. It is is pervaded by a strong sense of mysticism and spirituality... "I want to see a fresh, unknown world, I want a new sense of wonder such as must strike an infant if he were to become a grown man overnight... I want to be a full-stop rather than eternally a comma in the punctuation of time... ".The opener "Echi dall'ignoto" (Echoes from the Unknown) is a short instrumental, provided by the guest Federico Pedichini a.k.a. Freddy Delirio from Death SS, that sets the atmosphere. It leads to the nervous, hypnotic "La bottega delle meraviglie" (The Hall of Riddles) that describes a visit to a very strange shop where the borders between reality and dream are blurred. Here the protagonist of the novel, Fortunatus Hauberrisser meets for the first time the strange, haunting character with the green face portrayed in the beautiful art work by Danilo Capua... "It was smooth, with a black strip of cloth tied over its forehead, and yet it was deeply furrowed, like the sea, that can have waves but not wrinkle on its surface. The eyes were like chasms and yet they were the eyes of a human being and not empty sockets. The skin was a greenish olive colour and looked as if it were made of bronze, such as the races of ancient times may have had of whom it is said they were like dark-green gold..."The dark, Gothic "Chidher il Verde" (Chidher the Green) focuses on the peculiar character with the green face, vaguely based upon the legendary figure of The Wandering Jew. He's been on earth ever since the moon has been circling the heavens and is the one who can show you the way leading to a hidden spirituality... "Prophecy or circularity, claustrophobia, psychic undertow / You are just one step from the gallows / It's the turn of madness to rule over men...".The following "Trenodia delle dolci parole" (Threnody of the sweet words) features the beautiful vocals of the guest Sophya Baccini and draws a strong sense of loss and impending tragedy. It leads to the short, disquieting instrumental "Il rituale" (The ritual) and to the esoteric, threatening "La congrega delle Zee Dyk" (The Zee Dyk club) where the spectral vocals of another guest, David Krieg, contribute to draw a mystical delirium where the dangerous ritual of a cathartic, spiritual rebirth is consumed with deathly consequences."Il manoscritto" (The manuscript) is another track full of dark mysticism and visionary strength. There are some strong classical influences that could recall the Carmina Burana by Carl Orff and a constant flowing of raw energy waves. The protagonist discovers an ancient manuscript that helps him to go through some esoteric experiences... "The weapons of Death are: dream, daze and sleep / From one awakening to another, I live to find a new beginning...".The excellent instrumental "L'evocazione di Eva" (Eva's evocation) features the guests Claudio Simonetti (organ, Moog and Mellotron) and Martin Grice (flute sax). Along with the following "Retrospettiva di un amore" (Retrospective of a love) it depicts a love where spirituality prevails upon materialism. A strange magic binds the protagonist and his sweetheart, the strange prophecy of a perfect love that is stronger than Death..."Usibepu" was inspired by the character of the powerful necromancer and shaman of the same name, a violent and merciless Zulu warrior who wanted to possess Eva, the protagonist's fiancée... "Serving under the banner of greediness / I attend to the resurrection / I think again of the caste determination that prevented me from having you / Making even mockery of my magic...".The dazzling instrumental "L'apocalisse" (The Apocalypse) features the guest Gianni Leone (keyboards, organ, vocals) and describes with sudden vortexes of notes a storm so violent to conjure up the imagine of the end of the world. It leads to the final curtain of "Epilogo" (Epilogue), featuring narrative vocals and an obscure omen... "The walls of Jericho have crumbled / He's back from the Kingdom of Dead...".On the whole, an excellent, challenging work but beware! It takes many spins to be completely appreciated and, of course, you have to read the book!" - ProgArchives
    $16.00