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Riverside - Love, Fear And The Time Machine CD (album) cover

LOVE, FEAR AND THE TIME MACHINE

Riverside

 

Progressive Metal

4.07 | 871 ratings

From Progarchives.com, the ultimate progressive rock music website

crashandridemusic
4 stars Before the album was released, the only information I heard was universal: this album is soft. Allow me stand besides those critics and confirm that, yes, 'Love, Fear, and the Time Machine' is indeed softer. With each listen of the album, though, I started to not only understand why the band chose this direction, but began to appreciate their decision. Their last album 'Shrine of New Generation Slaves' was my least favorite album of theirs, considering the overly dark nature of the album. Although the sound was an homage to classic progressive rock techniques used by bands like Yes and Genesis, the album was very depressing, dark for the sake of being dark. Instead being a fan of their first three albums (classified as the 'Reality Dream Trilogy'), I particularly enjoyed the lighter approach to a darker theme in those albums. The softer synth and acoustic guitar in 'I Believe,' the Pink Floydian nature of 'Second Life Syndrome,' and the beautiful guitar arrangements in 'Ultimate Trip'; I've been waiting for another album like this. I believe 'Love, Fear, and the Time Machine' perfectly cures that itch.

A more refined sound, Riverside's newest album is softer and more approachable. Take the opening track 'Lost (Why Should I Be Frightened By A Hat?),' which is arguably one of my favorite tracks on the album. The delicate synths by Michal Lapaj are spotlighted in this song, an especially catchy tune that follows Mariusz Duda on vocals. The complementary notes in the chorus ('Come / Follow me / We'll go down where the river flows') is absolutely beautiful, and perfectly sets up the rest of the album.

Speaking of the delicateness of the album, 'Love, Fear, and the Time Machine' also contains some of the most uplifting subject matter in their discography. The second song 'Under the Pillow' is an urge to get out of bed and do something, while 'Found (The Unexpected Flaw of Searching)' shines a light on self-reflection. But it wouldn't be Riverside without some downer moments, especially '#Addicted' and their commentary on contemporary life, and 'Towards the Blue Horizon' with the loss of a friend. The themes touch upon all aspects of life, and are the most relatable than on any album they've released.

As for the instrumentals themselves, Piotr Grudzinski on the guitar takes more of a backseat on this album than any other. As he is spotlighted in previous Riverside albums (especially the 'Reality Dream Trilogy'), the guitar arrangements don't seem to stand out as much to me. Don't get me wrong, each song contains that Riverside-esque rhythm and the slower but artsy lead solos. But overall, I feel Grudzinski is delegated to rhythm guitar most of the album, letting others in the band shine. It's undeniable that Duda is spotlighted the most in this album, considering his vocals and bass guitar are more present in this album than any other. I feel the bass grooves are louder than any other instrument, whether I'm listening through headphones or through speakers. Duda's higher register voice matches wonderfully with the lighter nature of the album, and is a great opposite to the deep bass he provides. Lapaj's presence seems greater on this album than prior albums, with all the classic sounding keyboards and synthesizers. I thoroughly enjoyed the contemporary approach to modern progressive rock that has been happening lately, and consider 'Love, Fear, and the Time Machine' another great addition.

Riverside has outdone themselves with 'Love, Fear, and the Time Machine,' being one of my favorite albums they've released since their original trilogy. With a more approachable sound, fans of most types of progressive rock should enjoy this record as well.

Taken from Crash And Ride Music

crashandridemusic | 4/5 |

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