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Lunatic Soul - Under The Fragmented Sky CD (album) cover

UNDER THE FRAGMENTED SKY

Lunatic Soul

 

Crossover Prog

3.65 | 83 ratings

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thesimilitudeofprog
4 stars Mariusz Duda is without any doubt one of the most prolific and creative forces in progressive music right now. For several years, alongside his band mates in Riverside and through out Lunatic Soul, he has become a leader, about creativity, experimenting with sounds, melodies, soundscapes, and what the musician can do with his bass or keyboards. For me this give his music such a distinctive sound and personality. Pure gold in progressive music in my humble opinion. Under the Fragmented Sky, the 6th Lunatic Soul full album is a continuation to the highly praised Fractured. Mariusz develops the dark atmosphere even further while developing the general concept flowing through its predecessor.

Under the Fragmented Sky was originally going to be a maxi-single, but Duda took the brave decision to give these songs a life of their own by shaping them into a full-length album, completing the journey started in "Fractured".

The listener is greeted with 'He av en', which is a savory appetizer for what's to come. Lunatic Soul's music at its best. Bass lines heavily distorted, in a melody that morphs into rhythms with vocalized harmonies. Slow beat of tambourine, and more melodies overlapping but never covering the other, join all together to create a beautiful soundscape. Trials open the way to the electronic side of Duda's dark compositions and musical atmospheres. Here we're given a lyric line repeated in a robotic way, almost nonstop in different harmonies and ranges. The flowing melody seems to me extracted from any Riverside song but then taken apart and rebuilt with sounds, effects and rhythms. This is classic in Lunatic Soul's experimentation. Towards the second half, the song turns darker with ominous vocal sounds. The keyboard and guitar melodies that any Tangerine Dream fan would love. Sorrow is a short transitional song with acoustic guitar and atmospheric ghost-like sounds, opening the doors for the title track Under the Fragmented Sky. The title-track which takes its name comes from 'A Thousand Shards of Heaven' from Fractured, is a beautiful yet sad song but musically stunning. Lyrically I understand it as the struggle between succumbing to fears and anger or to remain true to oneself despite our losses. I believe this song might be one of the most personal ones for Duda's after all the tragedy and transformation he has gone through over the last couple of years. Many of us can easily identify with this struggle, that's why it moves every fiber of my heart. The song closes returning to the same melody from He av en, but in a different key. Honoring the dark nature of this album, 'Shadows' starts with a very dark atmosphere. The main melody, threading through the song could have been on any Riverside album, but how Duda is able to turn melodies, sounds and effects into such atmospheres is something he is absolutely a genius at. Like Shadows Raising the Night' continues this voyage through dark realms full of shades and colored lights. Here we're offered more color and more complex rhythms aided by cymbal sounds and strings. Mariusz vocalization joins to guide us calling our curiosity to be awakened to find its own path. The Art of Repairing contains off-beat electronic sounds like broken machines. Together they slowly form a rhythm and melodies. Like a machine finding new life thanks to its own errors when masterfully repaired by allowing it just to flow. Progression at its finest. Closing this journey, 'Untamed' is the second and last song with full lyrics on this remarkable album. It has a more positive vibe. This very personal song is more a flag of hope showing us that not all is darkness in this world. It tells us that we all have our strengths within ourselves, no matter how dark the night is, there's always ways to win our fights and defeat our demons. What a way to close this album. Mariusz Duda has done it again. He has given us another masterpiece of progressive experimentation that is full of emotions. Once again musically he gave us the chance to witness an even darker journey through feelings and emotions, but delivering us into light again with our hopes for what's to come.

The future is bright for us.

thesimilitudeofprog | 4/5 |

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