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Riverside - Out Of Myself CD (album) cover

OUT OF MYSELF

Riverside

 

Progressive Metal

4.20 | 820 ratings

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Alitare
4 stars A Minor Masterpiece that's is too keen to show it's influences on the sleeve.

Riverside - Out Of Myself (2003)

Overall Rating: 13 (That's a weak, almost a 12, really)

Best Song: THE SAME RIVER, or REALITY DREAM II

Let me just take some time out of your busy schedule of fapping to your Dream Theater records to show you something really cool! Er, let e also begin by mentioning a few names: Pink Floyd, King Crimson, Pain of Salvation, Brian Eno. If you like one or more of these particular artists, I implore you to go out on a limb and get yourself acquainted with Riverside's debut. It's real good! Why is it real good? Well, it takes all the good chunks of these groups and globs them together like a musical potluck gumbo surprise.

What's next? A Shine On guitar solo full of echo and space reverb? An alternative rock song with a big slab of prog metal jamming right in the middle? An instance of sheer beauty? A Dream Theater inspired jam that I don't care for too much (only once or so). Now here's a collection of individuals who don't have stupid debilitating ear disorders luring them into the trap of delivering a record with, I dunno, melodies! Yeah, this album's rife with rich melodic passages, the bastard greedy sellouts! You can't be a Rush tribute band if you put those on thar! Run!

Boy howdy, The Same River is an eye stabbing opener, full of all the stuff good openers are chock to the full brimm full of, like interesting musical fullness. It hops around from being this instrumental space jam mirroring the Floydsters directly from Wish You Were Here or Animals, then it morphs into this soft indie pop tune with downer vibes and a real Eno inspired fluidity, until it all comes together at the end. It's a weiner! I mean, it's a winner!

Yar, the concept is something about ental torture and lucid dreaming or maybe astral projection or using dreams to escape harsh reality, or maybe finally realizing you've been deluding yourself ll these years, living a false life, or something. I can't really be bothered to pay too much attention to the lyrics, I'm too busy paying attention to the music, which is GOOD with a capital R which actually doesn't stand for good. Instead, I decide it stands for Rip-off. Hey, that's the only easily noticeable flaw with this entire disc. Which, by the way, is a decent 53 minutes. If you'll give me a moment to rant...

And rant I shall!

I cannot stand the compact disc culture we're in, where each disc allows for almost 80 minutes of music. This actually gives contemporary bands the impetus to fill them up. More music for yer moolah, I guess? Anyway, it has caused a vile resurgence of the sickening devil known as 'yo momma'. Wait, I mean filler. Yes, you have every Tom, Dick, and Winthrop giving us 70+ minutes of music with each release, and maybe ten minutes will be worth your time. I'm not saying Out Of Myself is a masterwork of subtlety and concision, but it definitely don't do much to go overboard. Really, it's a devoted, admirably performed tribute to some of my favorite bands. These Polish sausages would go on to further define their own melded sound in subsequent releases, but that doesn't keep this from being a real good 'un. I just wish more bands would cut back their flabby excesses and actually release something with definitive substance. Sigh, I'm asking for too much again, aren't I?

The other album highlight is the sickeningly tasteful jam Reality Dream II, that has all the sound effects and pizazz that screams 'class act'. It also screams 'David Gilmour', with the shrill guitar drilling that I love so much. You might not love it, but let's face reality, folks, and this album is firmly steeped in the concepts of reality and dreams. My opinion is more important than yours. Go away! Don't forget your copy of Out Of Myself, though. I gotta say how emotionally resonant the bass lines are in this album. Rarely ever are bass guitars used to such a moody effect.

In the end, this is just really, really great music. It's not world shattering, and no, not all of it is as memorable as even the band themselves would become just a couple years down the road, but rarely does a band come in, fully armed with their arsenal like Riverside does. Golly, this is good, dark stuff.

****1/2

Alitare | 4/5 |

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