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Methexis - Suiciety CD (album) cover

SUICIETY

Methexis

 

Crossover Prog

3.93 | 74 ratings

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Matti
Prog Reviewer
4 stars Such an improvement from the 2011 debut The Fall of Bliss, which was performed almost completely by the Greek Nikitas Kissonas. A gifted multi-instrumentalist and composer-producer he is, but especially as a vocalist he wasn't the best possible. Joe Payne - I know nothing about him - does a perfect vocal job on this conceptual album that has a lot of passion and drama. Keyboards are played by Linus Kåse (ÄNGLAGÅRD), bass by Brett d'Anon and drums by Walle Wahlgren. Nikos Zades, another Greek, is credited for sound design and D&B programming. The recordings were made in four countries: Greece, Sweden, UK and USA. Kissonas himself plays only guitars this time. The improvement is huge not only in performance but also in writing. The music here is ambitious, grandiose, colourful, impassionate, unpredictable and very original. Eclectic Prog more than Crossover Prog for sure.

The concept (the cleverly titled album being "a comment on contemporary society") is quite demanding to follow, the songs not being very narrative or cinematic. Something about the painful dilemma of the society versus the individual is all I need to understand straight away, and if the picture gets clearer as the album gets more familiar, that's fine. Guillermo's review refers to The Wall, and I could add MARILLION's Brave as some sort of spiritual relation (in my mind anyway), perhaps the latest one by STEVEN WILSON too. But I'll concentrate on music now, which wisely avoids becoming very dark and depressing.

Curiously the album starts with the last of the four "Chapters", IV. Its only part, rather minimalistic and melancholic 'Ruins' has orchestral-sounding synths and emotionally strong vocals. 5-part Chapter I stands for "Exterior". 'Remember, Fear's a Relic' is a lively number that has both ZAPPA-like jazz-rock flavour and GENTLE GIANT-ish funkiness. The introvert and delicate 'The Window's Cracking Sound' serves as a brief interlude before the majestic brass arrangement opens 'Who Can It Be?' which is a mindblowing eclectic piece. The acoustic guitar solo brings classical nuances, and the vocals go to wild PETER HAMMILL-ish territories. 'The Origin of Blame' centers around loonie, creepy (and frankly quite irritating) vocals backed mostly by a simple piano staccato before the more relaxed end section reminding me of TODD RUNDGREN. The track is seamlessly followed by a beautiful instrumental 'Prey's Prayer' - which is very enjoyable if you like the melodic and atmospheric stuff of PINK FLOYD and CAMEL. Wow...!

Chapter II ("Interior") has two 8½ minute pieces, both among the highlights. The mood is a bit more intimate than on Chapter I. One can concentrate on the amazing and many-sided soundscape on 'Sunlight'. 'The production of this album is really superb. The Relic' centers first on tender vocals, acoustic guitar and piano; the arrangement grows bigger and reaches orchestral power, returning occasionally to the acoustic delicacy. A string quartet is involved.

Chapter III, or 'Suiciety', gets funkier and more hectic again. The brief vocal section in the end is the darkest one on the whole album, which therefor ends on a depressing note. The aftertaste is somewhat confused, as Kissonas has probably meant it to be, but I would have preferred a more uplifting ending (compare 'Made Again' on Brave) on this extraordinary concept album. 4½ stars rounded down. The cover is quite ugly really...

Matti | 4/5 |

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