Riverside — Rapid Eye Movement
(Inside Out Music IOMCD-283, 2007, CD)
by Paul Hightower, Published 2008-01-01
Riverside's new one consolidates their position at the forefront of Polish prog bands and convincingly encapsulates what makes this quartet so effective, with few of the hamstrings that can weigh down modern prog metal. Rapid Eye Movement finishes off the "Reality Dream" trilogy, which won't win any award for conceptual originality, plus I find Mariusz Duda's lyrics functional at best, though this doesn't stand in the way of what this collection has to offer. He may not have much to say, but it's how he says it that makes Duda's vocals work, mixing raw-throated, and visceral power with plaintive fragility. At times, as on "Rainbow Box," the band sounds like Steven Wilson fronting Dream Theatre, though I find the prog metal side of Riverside the least interesting. They're capable of much more than crunchy riffing and speedy unisons and this is where the band excels. For the most part, the album tips into the realm of modern prog with an edge pioneered by Porcupine Tree and Tool. The band are playing at their best with nice power trio work from Duda, guitarist Piotr Grudzinski, and drummer Piotr Kozieradzki. Michal Lapaj's keyboards are largely atmospheric, and put to good effect on songs like "Schizophrenic Prayer." Occasionally the music even slips into acoustics, as seen on "Through the Other Side" and "Embryonic," which reveals a side of the band that could stand a lot more exposure. With this album cycle put to rest I'll be very interested to see where Riverside goes from here.
John Abercrombie RIP – Another of the greats of jazz guitar has left us. John Abercrombie plied his way through a beautiful series of albums on the ECM label as well as bringing his talent to bear on albums by many of jazz's greatest artists. From his early work in the group Dreams to Gateway and outstanding work with Billy Cobham, Jack DeJohnette, Kenny Wheeler, and many more to his own trios and quartets, he brought a unique instrumental voice to the world. » Read more
First ProgStock Festival Set for October – October 2017 will see the inaugural edition of a festival called ProgStock in Rahway, New Jersey at the Union County Performing Arts Center. With a definite slant towards neo-progressive music, the event is sure to please many fans with the inclusion of such artists as Echolyn, Glass Hammer, and Aisles. The festival will take place October 13-15. » Read more
Clive Brooks RIP – Word reaches us today of another sad passing in the music world. Drummer Clive Brooks, best known as a member of such Canterbury bands as Egg, Uriel / Arzachel, and Groundhogs, has died at the age of 67. Details are sketchy at this point. The news was reported on Nick Mason's Facebook page — Brooks was Mason's drum tech. » Read more
Col. Bruce Hampton RIP – The phrase "He died doing what he loved" is almost a cliche, but in the case of Col. Bruce Hampton, it couldn't be more true. Hampton, who was born Gustav Berglund III, collapsed on stage at his own 70th birthday celebration and later passed away. The event took place at the Fox Theater in Atlanta. » Read more