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Lunatic Soul - Walking On A Flashlight Beam CD (album) cover


Lunatic Soul


Crossover Prog

4.00 | 415 ratings

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4 stars Walking On A Flashlight Beam Is The Emotional Equivalent To Taking A Leap Of Faith For A Person To Examine Oneself On A More Deeper And Personal Level.

As a music listener, one of the most treasured feelings and goals is to seek and gain an emotional attachment or understanding in the sonic atmosphere to which you, the listener, are giving your ears time and attention towards.

It is without question or any doubt in my mind that, Mariusz Duda has created a massive landscape of personal and emotional sounds/messages in his latest Lunatic Soul offering, Walking On A Flashlight Beam. Even the title of the album alone implies so much for the listener to try and wrap his or her head around. Firstly, I am or would call myself a serious music-head, so going beneath the surface to try and understand what it is I am hearing/listening to, both instrumentally and emotionally, is something I relish and enjoy doing. Music in general is a gift and a creative/therapeutic gateway for me personally. Music also breeds stimulation of the imaginative/creative thought process for me as well, so through the experience of sonic template that is uniquely God given created by others is something that I know I am deeply depended on, which is why "Walking On A Flashlight Beam" has cut me pretty deep upon closely attaching and examining myself emotionally to this record, but in a very good way. Here is why.

There are certain tracks, which I will highlight that have bonded to me on a deeper level. First off, 'Shutting Out The Sun' deeply connects with me. This is a hard hitting musical piece that represents introversion and raveling yourself up in the creativity and works of others. Selecting a dark atmosphere like a room with all the shutters closed and plugging into another world/reality sonically is what Duda's expression is shown forth and represented so chillingly well in this sonic endeavor. There is no question that I, personally, connect with this song to a very high degree. As I have gotten older I have become more introverted and have felt less of a need to initiate things socially, mainly with other people, and to just immerse myself in the world of music and shut everyone and anything out. "Shutting out the sun" has a sonic template that definitely represents a huge facet of my personally in my life currently. The song's dark, brooding synthesizers and bass lines from Duda really represent and invoke a scary nature by how we can get so caught up in our own indulgences and cut everyone and everything off at the same time with not one care in the world. "Shutting out the Sun" will go down as one of the most personal songs I have ever listen to. It is beautiful, dark and a bit scary all in one. It's a hard reality check for myself indeed. "A prison of our own Making." Next is the track "Cold" and it is actually the second song on the album. It again represents a strong introverted nature like "shutting Out The Sun" only this time, thematically, "Cold" characterizes a person really struggling or wanting to come out of a certain hard, isolated atmosphere, but there is a glimmer of hope or as represented "light" at the end of the tunnel if you will. Certainly the lyric " there is something beyond that draws me in" shows a need for an individual to abandon his or her dark fortress and start pressing towards a brighter path or a better quality of life. Also, sonically "Cold" is absolutely blissful. I adore the bass line by Duda in this song. It is such a driving force of low end and it represents the songs message and character so well. A major toe tapper for sure. Highly recommended for extreme bass aficionados. Another highlight for me on this album is the track, "Treehouse." Now I didn't have a deep connection with this song lyrically, but sonically I sure as heck did. "Treehouse" is the track on the album that solidifies my interpretation as Mariusz Duda being the Polish Steven Wilson if you will in the progressive music world. Duda's ability to create such a melodic and beautiful ballad comes full circle with "Treehouse." I love it's acoustic nature and rhythmic drumming by, Wawrzyniec Dramowicz. It's just so perfect and Dramowicz's drumming may be somewhat of an underrated force on the album, but certainly not me...not one bit. "Treehouse" overall, gets the nod for being the most uplifting sounding song on the album. Lyrically though, not so much. However, the lyrical passage "can you hear-its all quiet-it feels alright- I guess I feel into your heaven" can characterize a happy spiritual outlook through dreams vs reality. Very interesting and beautiful all together. The next driving force is the epic, Pygmalion's Ladder. This 12min track is a piece of music that I fell in love with instantly. It is so creative and represents the art of Crescendo so tactfully well. "Pygmalion's Ladder" starts off with a light kind of middle eastern vibe with the use of keyboard soundscapes and acoustic guitar, then the track starts to mobilize into something far more ominous and that is largely due to the help of Dramowicz's drumming and of course Duda's eerie soundscapes that are more of an industrial sounding flavor that kind of showcase a machine growing closer and more powerful to its pray. The song is so clever and is the most multi instrumental track on the album. "Pygmalion's ladder" also has some of the best bass lines I've ever heard. A thumping joy indeed. It pounds the imagination if you will. Overall I feel Pygmalion's Ladder song structure wise, has one of the best crescendos in progressive rock right now. Lyrically, you couldn't ask for more deep, introspective themes/passages. The song is pure art and I am deeply raveled with in it, so "Maybe I am damaged beyond Repair."

The last track and fitting enough to be my final highlight and reflection on the album is the self-titled, gorgeously haunting Walking On A Flashlight Beam. This is the song that spurred me to write a more personal review and reflection on WOAFB in general. Sometimes when we listen to a piece of music that really connects with us it inspires or unleashes some new feelings with in us that we so desperately have to share with one another. WOAFB has definitely awoken some personal feelings with in me because of its deep sonic connections it has with my psyche. To continue, I absolutely adore the WOAFB track. Everything down to its theme of what it represents, which is actually inspired by a Batman comic issue entitled "The Killing Joke." If one decides to pick up the deluxe edition that contains the DVD you will be blessed to know all the inside information on how "Duda" was inspired to create this song in general. I think you will be quite surprised and there is some great dark humor represented as well for Duda's motives to creating such an unbelievable song. Moving on though, WOAFB like Pygmalion's Ladder has again one of the most incredible build ups offered in progressive rock I feel. This time around it feels like the most unique kind of musical therapy I think I've ever experienced with regards to how WOAFB is constructed. It starts off very slow going and whimsical in nature with its poignant and almost 80's sounding synthesizers. However, as the track represents an 8 minute and 10 second journey you get a huge diverse adventure sonically speaking. This is a track that makes you think about a lot of things weather it be of that of the great unknown or some way to triumph over doubt and skepticism in ones life and bust through those dark and awful prisons we create for ourselves. I had all these feelings/thoughts when listening to WOAFB, especially during the last 2min of the song. You wanna talk about a crescendo that will move you to the point where you experience tears of joy like in say, Genesis's "Entangled" you've hit the jackpot for sure. Walking on a flashlight Beam has Gigantic pounding drums and ethereal guitar work that is repetitious to the point where its so clever, that the sounds just get beaten into your head beautifully. WOAFB definitely goes down as my favourite track of 2014. It is pure and utter sonic joy.

One other note I'd like to touch upon briefly is the album's sound quality and production. Quite simply, it is that of a top notch nature. The sonic power couple, Magda and Robert Srzedniccy have done a gorgeous job with album's mix and overall production. It is borderline perfection to my ears. I do not have the slightest complaint with WOAFB's sound engineering, which is entirely rare for me these days. This album is a match made in heaven through a nice, warm Analog signal with a killer pair of headphones.

In conclusion, Walking On A Flashlight Beam for the most part has connected with me both sonically and lyrically on very deep level; however, I did not receive the same feelings or givings with every single track on the entire album. Songs like "Gutter","the Fear Within" and "Sky Drawn in Crayon" didn't really grab me as much and I found myself drifting and thinking of the other tracks on the album that I am such a fan of instead while even listening to those songs! Don't get me wrong, I feel every single track on WOAFB is highly listenable, but the songs that I highlighted really outweigh and set the bar pretty high compared to the rest that weren't mentioned. All in all, I realize this is simply a matter of sonic taste and I can certainly understand how many in the progressive rock community would merit WOAFB a masterpiece, but I feel otherwise. Although, this album is an essential listen nonetheless.

4 stars Sellotaped.

* this review is dedicated to the many I have interacted with here on Prog Archives and have the same personal feelings towards music in one form or another just as I do. You are all great and it has been a pleasure discussing all things sonically beautiful. May you all Walk On A Flashlight Beam with ease.

Prog on.

progbethyname | 4/5 |


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