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Riverside - Shrine Of New Generation Slaves CD (album) cover




Progressive Metal

4.07 | 955 ratings

From, the ultimate progressive rock music website

Prog Leviathan
Prog Reviewer
4 stars Riverside continues to distinguish itself as one of the most consistent and complete prog-metal bands of the last decade and beyond with Shrine to a New Generation of Slaves . This album uses the band's palette of dark, moody, bottom-heavy, and many textured sounds to create excellently crafted songs and a mature listening experience.

The thing Riverside does exceptionally well is reach inside the listener to touch emotional nerves that many bands strive for, but never quite arrive at. Duda's vocals are key to this; they're masculine, gently accented, and in this album, often sung in his more mellow tone. He's emotional without being contrived, and his thoughtful phrasing adds a high level of polish.

The aggressive moments of Shrine to a New Generation of Slaves are mostly instrumental, carried by Duda's huge bass lines and walls of keyboards by Lapaj. Unlike many bands in the genre, guitars are somewhat understated and melodic. Grudzinksi doesn't have any shredding guitar solos or moments that tie the listener up in knots (such as Petrucci or others); instead, he adds to the riffing or hooks or melodies as needed. This restraint may be the secret sauce that helps give Riverside a unique sound when compared to other prog-metal groups. Like Tool, it's the experience that is important, not the individual moments of a single instrumentalist.

Shrine to a New Generation of Slaves is a top-shelf prog-metal release, and worthy addition to the band's library. It's easy to approach and enjoy. For me, their debut is sets the milestone that hasn't yet been met, but with a band that is so consistently good, it's only a matter of time. Why not 5 stars? For me, the subject matter doesn't hit home. Lyrically this album is basically an indictment of pop-culture, which seems to be a required theme for modern prog bands. I don't disagree but it feels like an easy target and the result doesn't take me on much of a journey. That's a quibble for sure though; this is a great album!

Note the limited edition features a second disk with 20 minutes of moody instrumentals with a cool electronic vibe. Very cool bonus!

Songwriting: 4 - Instrumental Performances: 4 - Lyrics/Vocals: 4 - Style/Emotion/Replay: 4

Prog Leviathan | 4/5 |


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