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Riverside - Second Life Syndrome CD (album) cover




Progressive Metal

4.26 | 1538 ratings

From, the ultimate progressive rock music website

Any Colour You Like
Prog Reviewer
5 stars Very few albums can force their way into my heart. Second Life Syndrome is one of them.

Like Out of Myself, the music on SLS is based heavily around beautiful guitar work, and a passionate flair for emotional songwriting. The music is not overly complex, and at times feels as if Pink Floyd have just been in the recording studio guiding Mariusz Duda's hand. The often angular mash of Metal, classic psych and rock grooves ensures that SLS flows with amazing clarity and a powerful emotional drive.

The highlight of the album is undoubtedly the epic, Second Life Syndrome, a track that spans over 15 minutes featuring several evolving movements. It mixes ambient pieces with Tool like grooves, Porcupine Tree emulating chorus work and epic Floydian guitar solos. It is a proto-typical Riverside composition that stands alone as one of the best rock/metal compositions of recent years. Indeed, Duda has shown a knack for writing such songs, as tracks like Volte-Face, Conceiving You and Dance With The Shadow all highlight. There are plenty of melodic hooks and pop style structures to ensure that SLS is easily a memorable listen, but there are also many moments of progressive bliss - including the final installation of the three part instrumedely, Reality Dream. Mariusz Duda's vocal work also appears to be more assured than in the first album, complemented by an even more solid instrumental performance from the band.

The beauty of Second Life Syndrome is the way that technicality and songwriting combine, a near perfect synthesis that does not suffer from over-technicality, nor over-simplification. Having said this, there is a tangible retro prog aura to many of the tracks, which may not please some modern prog fans. This is but a minor gripe, for Riverside manages to develop their own unique sound, irrespective of their obvious inspirational artists.

Essential for all classic prog fans, especially those who enjoy the like of Pink Floyd, Porcupine Tree, Tool, Dream Theater and many more.

Any Colour You Like | 5/5 |


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