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Pat Metheny - Imaginary Day CD (album) cover

IMAGINARY DAY

Pat Metheny

 

Jazz Rock/Fusion

3.90 | 60 ratings

From Progarchives.com, the ultimate progressive rock music website

Salviaal
5 stars This is one of Metheny's most eclectic albums and probably the best album to get for all of you prog rock fans. It is surprising to see Metheny in the archives as he has very little in common with rock in my estimation, however when you think about it, this album perfectly exemplifies all the key elements of prog, according to the definition of the "prog rock?" section of this site.

The title track is a stunning opener with the main pentatonic theme being transformed from slow ethnic style at the beginning into a harmonized burner at the end. In between of all of that there is a fast exposition and a long solo played on fretless guitar that doesn't fail to amaze. It's all so amazing to think how elaborate all the sounds are, how elaborate the dynamics between the band members are, how elaborate the harmonic motion is and how elaborate the rhythmic voids are. It all sounds so easy, an equivalent of a ballerina performing complicated moves with utmost ease.

The second track "Follow Me" is the polar opposite of the first. It has a simple alternative rock sound to the untrained ear with guitar strumming throughout in 4/4 time and very catchy being lyriclessly sung and played on synth-axe. I didn't like this "song" much until I heard Anna Maria Jopek's version of it with actual lyrics.

The next track is a short enough interlude with what sounds like noodling on that infamous guitar with about 3 necks and 4 sets of strings. Good ambience and you wonder just how we have traveled over just 3 tracks and it's scary to think Metheny doesn't repeat himself even once on this album!

"A Story Within Store" is more of a straightforward jazz tune with great soloing from all involved, at first it doesn't seem exciting but the beauty is there. That is one of the key features of any good Metheny/Mays album, you have to listen to it and you like it better with time, even the tunes that sound harmless the first time you hear them.

"The Heat of the Day" is an exhilarating number with some spanish influences complete with what sounds like flamenco style castanets. This is another very proggy song with meters changing every other bar, and some amazing harmonic themes. Somewhat similar to Al di Meola's more recent work but oh so much better!

After that we have another simple theme, in fact that seems to be the general theme of this album, the odd-numbered tracks are adventurous and the even-numbered tracks are simpler and melodic, so if it is prog you're looking for start by only listening to tracks 1, (3), 5, 7, 9.

"Roots of Coincidence" is one of Metheny's off-the-wall compositions and it is really atmospheric industrial metal. No I'm not kidding! A heavily distorted riff is accompanied by electronic sounds, with a guitar solo so technical and involved it would make even John Petrucci blush.

The penultimate creates a gorgeous atmosphere with nylon string guitar. Amazingly intense despite its soft dynamics and slow pulse, the tune would move even a dismembered carcass.

Finally we arrive to our destination to have a brilliant awakening - a jig in 9/8 with different meters implied by accentuations of different beats, under a cascade of liquidy synths ever so perfectly harmonized subsequently distorted into modal vision.

In the end, I am happy to have Metheny here, have never thought of him in same lines of thoughts as Yes or Genesis, but after this not-as-thourough-as-usual listening session I realized that prog doesn't only reside in rock.

Salviaal | 5/5 |

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