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Riversea - Out Of An Ancient World CD (album) cover





3.84 | 94 ratings

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4 stars UK project RIVERSEA was formed by Marc Atkinson and Brendan Eyre in 2006, and in the years that followed they slowly but surely wrote material, enlisting the aid of numerous friends when the time came to record their compositions. The end result became the album "Out of an Ancient World", self released by the band towards the end of 2012.

As far as band projects go, Riversea comes across as a fairly traditional one as far as compositions go. The material is rather straight forward, without any structural surprises to speak of and the arrangements pretty much unfolds as expected to. This is a band that sticks to well known territories throughout, taking on the challenge of creating memorable music within a context that doesn't give them too many strings to play upon.

It is a challenge Riversea masters quite nicely too. The mostly tender compositions that unfolds are strong in mood and atmosphere, both when sticking to tender ballad-oriented compositions from start to finish as well as when slowly developing their creations to end up as majestic constellations sporting smooth but rich symphonic backdrops in jubilant harmony with melodic guitar motifs. A token few excursions into harder edged territories appear as well, like the short but brilliant Fallen, and we're also treated to a somewhat surprising lead motif in the initial phases of Fallen Stars. But by and large this is an album that wanders from one ballad oriented construction to the next one, and more often than not in a rather predictable manner.

The key elements that elevates this production are twofold. The minor of these are the keyboards, Eyre knows his way around frail piano motifs just as much as symphonic backdrops and deliver both of them in a high quality manner. But the star of the show is vocalist Marc Atkinson. He's got a beautiful, emotional voice that is just as much at home in delivering the most tender of frail moments as he is when opting for higher impact and forceful use of his vocal talents. At all times with a certain longing tenderness in his voice, of the kind that will mesmerize many and especially those with a strong affection for high quality lead vocals. And just to have mentioned this too: Pitch perfect delivery throughout as far as I can tell, and perfect choice of vocal style and delivery on all occasions too as far as I'm concerned.

If you're looking for boundary breaking, demanding and challenging progressive rock Riversea is a band you can safely pass by. But if lead vocals of the highest quality perfectly used to elevate and emphasize compositions with tender, frail and emotional qualities sounds like something you might enjoy, "Out of an Ancient World" is an album that you should investigate. In particular if symphonic backdrops and harmonic guitar details neo progressive rock style are descriptions you regard as positive ones.

Windhawk | 4/5 |


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