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4 stars I ve got the fortune of listening to a promo version in a friend,s house

This guys now are really mature.

If in the previous one they left behind the very strong Journey influences ,and less infl.of Saga or they are a really autonomy band.

Now i really can,t say they are similar to this or that band...but i,m very happy to say this a neo prog band(and not a AOR Rock band)and a fabulous neo-prog band

This album is very solid in the neo prog area..¿..heavy neo-prog maybe..?

Pompous melodies,some fantastic ones,nice melodies...for me the best album of neo p .in 2010(until now).

So what good news we have.............we don,t have always to wait to the next Pendragon,IQ,Saga,.. etc......,we can add in this list MYSTERY.

4,5 stars

Report this review (#282495)
Posted Tuesday, May 18, 2010 | Review Permalink
Heavy, RPI, Symph, JR/F Canterbury Teams
4 stars After the excellent cd Beneath the Veil of Winter's Face, Mystery are back with a second cd with the actual Yes singer Benoit David and guests such as John Jowitt, Darryl Stuermer and Oliver Wakeman. So the influence are obvious and i might add a closer influence with the swiss band, Clepsydra mainly because of the fine vocals, male and female that we have through out the cd. We have some beautiful melodies of symphonic music with a heavy edge create by the punchy drumming of Steve Gagné and the guitar of the versatile Michele St-Père. The band has produce is best cd, and they are now far away from their AOR influence by becoming a excellent Neo-Prog band with strong compositions.

4 stars and more...

Report this review (#282579)
Posted Wednesday, May 19, 2010 | Review Permalink
4 stars Mature Mystery

After long expectation, I finally am able to listen and comment the newest album by Canadian band Mystery - One Among the Living. The main reason for my expectation of this album is Benoit David - current vocalist of Yes. Yes are going to record new album and Mystery's One Among the Living is preparatory album for Benoit. First of all, I would say I shan't regret about my great expectations here, because I found one of the strongest albums of the year.

Mystery's prime genre is melodic rock with serious contact to classic rock and neo-progressive rock. One Among the Living isn't an exception. In addition to the line-up of the band, there are extensive list of notable guest musicians for the fulfilment of the album, including Daryl Stuermer, the bandmate of Benoit David in Yes - Oliver Wakeman and John Jowitt.

The album contains 14 songs (6 of which - parts of Through Different Eyes suite). One Among the Living characterizes as a long melodic album with solid and mature sound as well as a lot of Yes and neo-prog influence. I was wondering, whether Benoit David will include any Yes influence and the answer is yes! Only after two years with Yes he is composing like Yesman! The songs contain rich variety of memorable ideas. The structure of the music is constructed gentle and polished.

The songs are reasonable and the songwriting is of high quality. All around the album rules calmness, although there are a few dynamic and hearder songs with saturated sound. The musicianship is of high quality, too! Guitar solos are perspicacious; drums are precise and confident with complicated structure; bass complements the energy of the album with refinement; keyboards are lush and powerful.

At last, but not at least, I would mention this unique voice of Benoit David. It's the best component of One Among the Living. Presently, this is one of the best rock voices I've heard (together with Rob Halford's on Judas Priest's Nostradamus). Benoit David is able to sing high octaves (like Jon Anderson), as well as powerful and artistic parts when it's needed. Just brilliant! Highly recommended to all who like music with such parameters! 4+ stars.

Report this review (#284350)
Posted Monday, May 31, 2010 | Review Permalink
4 stars Now that we are left the theatre of the mind and accomplish our Destiny to walk Beneath the veil of winter's face, we can now be One among the living. This is exactly the title of the new album from Mystery, and what an album this is! Michel St-Père and his Mystery men have deliver a polish gem that every prog lover should listen. This is not the typical progressive album where the guy's try to impress you with fast line or technical prowess. Don't get me wrong here, the guy's know there things! But the main force of the album is the way that every notes and rhythm are in symbiosis to create a great tapestry of soundscapes and powerful harmonies. The maestro of Mystery, Michel play with passion and grace from the beginning to the end. He is one of the best composer out there. Just listen how he built the progression and how each notes have a meaning and a perfect place. For me, he is the Steve Rothery of my place. But you know, the guitar is only one piece of the big picture of One among the living. Steve Gagné on drum have done a terrific job as usual. And what can i say about Benoit David. Simply put, he is one of the best progressive singer out there! He deliver such a precise and emotionnal performance on the album(listen the first notes of the song Wolf and you will know what i'm talking about).

From the rocky Kameleon man to the bombastic, tragical and epic Through Different Eyes and pass by the uplifting Sailing on a Wing, One among the living is a emotionnal ride that the listener will want to take again and again! Don't let the name of the band be a Mystery for and enjoy!

4.5 maybe a 5!

Report this review (#284998)
Posted Saturday, June 5, 2010 | Review Permalink
Honorary Collaborator
4 stars I'm sure there can't be too many PA members who aren't aware of the controversial replacement of Jon Anderson in Yes by Benoit David, singer with Canadian neo prog band Mystery. Whatever your views on the matter it will certainly have raised Mystery's profile amongst the prog community and their new album One Among The Living is bound to receive more attention than any of their previous releases as a consequence.

One Among The Living sees no great leaps or changes in style from their last excellent album, Beneath The Veil Of Winter's Face, where their sound owes as much to melodic AOR in the vein of Styx and Boston as it does to neo prog. Not surprisingly there's the occasional Yes moment in the sound too. As a result they're an easy and accessible listen with an emphasis on strong melodies. Overall the album matches ITVOWF but I have to admit there's nothing quite as good as Travel To The Night or As I Am here where the instant hooks and captivating instrumental close of the former demanded you to hit the replay button. Nevertheless, the quality never drops below good and is often excellent.

Highlights tend to be the most melodic songs; Wolf and Between Love and Hate being as good as it gets. Certainly not particularly complex; just great hooks with some powerful guitar work and lush keyboards. Special mention has to be made of Through Different Eyes, a 22 minute epic made up of 6 shorter pieces and is overall excellent. Well paced and structured with some strong instrumental work alongside the fine melodies. The Falling Man stands out for its darker sound and is another high point.

One Among The Living is another winner from Mystery sure to please any fans of the band and there's more than enough high quality material on offer to impress those who have decided to look in because of David's association with Yes and sure to win them a few new fans at least.

Report this review (#290198)
Posted Tuesday, July 13, 2010 | Review Permalink
4 stars Mystery last album to date released this year and named very suggestive One among the living is maybe thir best effort so far and one of the top albums of 2010 for sure. Besides the music which is pretty awesome, here are some well known invited guest like Daryl Stuermer on guitar or Oliver Wakeman among others. Well, this is a solid album, more towards eclectic music to me rather then a neo prog album, maybe some elemnts from this subgenre are present but definetly is not a neo prog release as a whole. Maybe Mystery is not one of the most known band from Canada, but with this album thy proved that they know bussines. The album has more then an hour of music and must confess I was very impressed by every piece, one or two of them remind me a lot of Black Sabbath (Tony Martin era), is like they were exctracted from Cross purposes or Headless cross albums. The album as whole is much heavier then on previous efforts, but keeping that AOR flavour in places. The voice of Benoît David is fantastic , he manage to have some special moments here like on title track One Among the Living , fantastic voice, he fits like glove here with the music. Also here is an epic of 23 min named Through Different Eyes divided in 6 parts, great , but not the best moments of the album I might say, really, anyway great work with good towards great instrumental passages. Maybe to some of you Mystery is totaly unknown band, but I mustsay that they realy done it with this one. Almost everything is perfect and where shoul belong, from guitar riffs, the vocal arrangements everything is top notch. An overlooked album IMO, this will be one of the top 10 at least at the end of the year. 4 stars easy, as the previous reviewers said this is the most mature work from the band and one of the top for this year.
Report this review (#291058)
Posted Monday, July 19, 2010 | Review Permalink
5 stars One of the very best!

I never heard of Mystery, a Canadian band, before. I read some good reviews here on PA, and decided to buy this album... And what a discovery! Thanks to previous really turned me into a Mystery adept. This is exacly the kind of music I love the most. Stong, melodic, well played neo prog. Since I got this album I can't stop playing it. The album is 69 minutes, and there is no filler, all 69 minutes are great. What I want to emphasise is the vocal quality though...This album stands out with great vocals, the voice of Benoid David is superb, and the chorusses are very well done. I'm not going to repeat that Benoid is a Jon Anderson clone, since I think the vocals here are much more AOR then Yes ever was, and remind me of Styx or Yourney.. Clean male vocals of the highest quality. The music is Neo Prog in the best sence...IQ/Arena/Marillion (H-era!) all come to mind sometimes. But above all it's a unique album, with very good composition and superb melodies, and hooks that will haunt you for days. Best tracks....are there something like that on perfect albums? Well...let's see... Wolf (5*), Till The Truth Comes Out (5*), Through Different Eyes III: So Far Away (5*), One Among The Living (5*), Sailing On A Wing (5*), the rest of the album is 4 or 4.5 stars. Masterpiece? F'sure!

Report this review (#292056)
Posted Monday, July 26, 2010 | Review Permalink
3 stars Well as usual it's difficult to rate a work of Neo-Prog, like the present one, cause you can find some interesting features within (above all the vocals) as well as a few common places, which could be a minor defect at the end...I figure that for example the old Styx should play in the manner of "Mystery" if They were a true melodic prog band. In fact this Canadian band can show some intelligent lyrics and quite strong guitars too, apart from a few more accessible moments!! This is their best album, after "Beneath the Veil of Winters Face", and it's not a pretentious work like for instance the debut album by Hamadryad (these latter looking for the modern version of Gentle Giant). Otherwise for me the compositions are not powerful enough like the best albums by Rush (above all "Farewell to Kings" and "Hemisphere"), but this album is never banal or too much easy (I forgive so many bands anyway for this kind of defect, like those ones inside a few albums by Saga or Pallas for instance, so I will not criticize Mystery also in this case...).

At the end They cannot exagerate their virtuosity, but the prog features are always present I can add an half star (maximum, cause their work lacks of creativity), but you know that I prefer the complex works of progressive music and- after all- as for this reason my opinion is a little bit affected only...nevermind, you can check this album out anyway!!

(even though the evaluation could be "four stars", inside a collection of pomp rock/AOR)

Report this review (#302969)
Posted Saturday, October 9, 2010 | Review Permalink
5 stars When I first obtained this work, I knew I liked it, but for some reason it disapeared in my play list, not to be heard again for two years. I fortuitously have rediscovered it, and cannot understand how I could have lost track of this wonderful work. I have listened to it now several times in just the last few days, and enjoy it more each time.

I have little to add to the other reviews. The epic track, "Through Different Eyes" is artfully composed with hooks and soaring phrases. It allows Benoit David to engage us with the full range of his voice, and alone makes the album a must have. But there are several other treasures in the other tracks that cement this album as one deserving five stars, even if not each track individually merits five stars.

I am glad I rediscovered it.

Report this review (#308700)
Posted Sunday, November 7, 2010 | Review Permalink
5 stars I have listened to this album quite a few times now and I still really like it, even after many listens. This is their strongest album they've made so far with strong vocals from Benoit David and some great song-writing from the combination of St Pere and David. It's an excellent album with some great melodies and starts off fantastically with the short 'Among the Living' intro and 'Wolf' following up. Track six 'Through Different Eyes' and the following 'One among the Living' are simply magic. Definitely worth a listen and I hope Benoit David returns for a stint in any future albums with them. That is, if he has time to take off from working with the current Yes line-up. Four stars easy.
Report this review (#586197)
Posted Saturday, December 10, 2011 | Review Permalink
Honorary Collaborator
5 stars Mystery that it took me so much time and effort to get into this rather eloquent French Canadian band! I mean all the right foundations were there: a glorious prog history in Quebec that remains almost unparalleled anywhere else, a previous album (Beneath the Veil?) that had surprised not only myself but the general prog public and add the incredible Benoit David saga, in and out of Yes, just like a true mercenary. "One Beyond the Living" passed by my listen/review radar in a moment of uncontrolled distraction, ripped a few tracks to my media player and promptly moved on to other stuff. Stupid me! I recently rediscovered this sensational album thanks to my automobile stereo and I have been indulging in multiple repeat plays for 2 weeks now. I do have a hard time with pigeon-holing this as a purely neo offering, as Mystery offers up a varied set of musical spices, ranging from power AOR pop (mostly due to Benoit's uniquely distinctive voice), kick-ass bass, solid drums and swirly guitar playing as well as a smattering of lavish symphonics and heady orchestrations. Certainly not experimental or avant-garde by any stretch, just well-polished and superbly crafted melodies that have some serious "oomph" , a trait that super-dinosaur Yes should consider, as they have produced so much satinized bleep lately (the so-so "Fly From Here" has Benoit's saving grace lungs all over the rather poor arrangements). Leader Michel St-Père has crafted a classic sounding album that has all the hallmarks of a stunner.

The wee ouverture is just a prelude to "Wolf", a full-blown melodic mesmerizer that has all the attributes to make a solid impression on any prog fan. Benoit shows off his incredible voice (hints of Jon Anderson, a way less nasal Steve Perry, Michael Sadler, the legendary Robert Plant and even REO Speedwagon's Kevin Cronin) and the main riff is stitched together with some wispy synthesizer, rifling guitar, rumbling bass and some solid drumming. The chorus is a complete screecher, hitting the loftiest highs and mining deep into the pleasure nodes. A simple yet effective synth flurry keeps the instrumental bridge lively and exciting, full of power, presence and melancholia. Yeah, its attractive, memorable and you can hum to it! The sleek "Between Love and Hate" is one of those sexy prog ballads that one can listen to all night, a goblet of luscious Vosne-Romanée in one hand and the breast of a lover in another. As the loving caress becomes an intense groove, spooky rhythms and a colossal chorus pound hard and fast, tossing in some technical prowess in chord changes as well as a ruthless axe solo. There is an unambiguous power-prog feel that is front and center, great driving music and cinematographic aural visualizations abound. The nearly 10 minute symph epic "Until the Truth Comes Out" continues the melancholic traits that litter this recording, crafting another gigantic melody and chiseling it with a diamond cutter's precision, "keeping the dream alive" and stretching the piece to successful lengths by introducing a myriad of sizzling shifts and compelling solo endeavors, St-Père in particular showing off some skill and symphonic technique in his extended instrumental section, sculpting some hot riffs that flutter mercilessly amid the screaming leads , all endowed by colossal mellotron bursts. This is easily one of their more intricate pieces ever, a must for progfans who still have any lingering doubts about their progressive quotient. .

After such a whopper, a little levity is permitted with the bold and heavy "Kameleon Man", a quirky, bass-fueled rumble that has a hint of classic Led Zeppelin. The main riff chugs along like a Swiss train, precise and dedicated, an "owl hoot" guitar that twists and turns. The synthesizer solo is sweet and impressive as the bulldozing riff hammers along, unmolested. Yeah, it's finished off by a blistering Jimmy Page-like axe solo that scratches and growls like someone still 'dazed and confused' after all these years!

The absolute highlight of this release is the 6 part, 22 minute and 35 second suite "Through Different Eyes", a colossus that the hopeless Yes could have created had it still had any creative juice left. This track is akin to the classic "Gates of Delirium" in its scope and harmonious disposition. We are in total symphonic realms, without any doubt what so ever. The excited electric guitar does some devious acrobatics at first (I like to call it "Satrianisms"), the electronic keyboards construct some sonic structures that are woven with elegant complexity and spectacularly crisp 6 strings jangling, leading to the excruciatingly gorgeous "So Far Away" section, a blood brother to the tear-jerking "Soon" off Relayer. The mood becomes deeply intense, foreboding and yet scintillatingly delicious all at once. The "dadi dadi dah" chorus is beyond genius and provokes the deepest sonic luxury. The burping Antoine Fafard bass and the raging guitar on the short but devastating "Point of No Return" section is utterly enthralling, followed shortly by its polar opposite, the autumnal pastoral beauty of "The Silent Scream", a track that hits the softer spot quite eloquently, almost Hackettesque in scope with Benoit delivering another crushing vocal performance. When St-Père liberates his guitar, he scours high and mighty in expressing the profoundest emotions and one just has to shake and tremble at all the talent displayed here. The finale is the exquisite "Dancing with Butterflies", a lush, sultry and sophisticated ending to a progressive glittering prize, an epic that has few peers in recent memory.

The title track only confirms Mystery's undeniable talent in writing sublime melodies and having the wherewithal to express them both vocally and musically. Not too many bands out there that can pull this off successfully. Bombastic, Wagnerian and Gargantuan are just words but the music distills even more attributes, the performances glittering and the overall impression is one of masterful comprehension of modern prog music, albeit with a more accessible slant. Asia, Squakett, ACT, Saga, Yes, are all way behind lagging in this department, as Mystery shows the way conclusively.

"The Falling Man" introduces some more eerie arrangements that hint at a cinematographic composition, menacing and malevolent riffs combine with unusual voice effects and an overall "heavy" feel, leaning towards something recent Arena would come up with.

The pretty "Sailing on a Wing" features famed guest Darryl Stuermer on jazzy lead guitar (what a solo!) and is another cracker track, full of infectious bravado and macho pomp, with Benoit singing his heart out.

I mean, really? This is an album that has a cavalcade of hysterically brilliant melodies, perfect instrumental prowess and a surreal vocalist that is utterly convincing. I frankly hope Benoit stays with Mystery and says "Non" to Yes. Easily the finest Quebec prog album ever, having that added attribute of exciting rock fans of all ages and stripes, as long as they have open minds and adventurous spirits.

Bien joué, les boys!

5 mystères vivants

Report this review (#827000)
Posted Sunday, September 23, 2012 | Review Permalink
Symphonic Team
4 stars Through different eyes

Apparently, the history of the Canadian band Mystery goes back to the 80's. But, it seems, it is only more recently that they have achieved bigger success. This could have something to do with that their vocalist Benoît David also was the vocalist for Yes for a brief time (and recorded Fly From Here with them the year after One Among The Living was released). Or it can be the other way around; that Yes got interested in David because of Mystery's independent success? Or a combination of the two? Regardless, it was surely an amazing career-boost for both David and for Mystery. Benoît David does indeed have a voice similar to that of Yes' Jon Anderson. But even if Yes is one of the band's influences, Mystery is not a Yes-clone.

Even if I wasn't immediately impressed, One Among The Living grew on me over further listens, and I began to enjoy it more and more. The melodic content is strong and the sound is pristine. At first I thought it was too "soft" for my taste, but the song The Falling Man encouraged me to give it further chances. Aspects of this song reminded me of Black Sabbath (one of my all time favourite bands). The closer Sailing On A Wing is more Camel like (another of my all time favourite bands). Guest appearances from Oliver Wakeman, Daryl Stuermer, and John Jowitt might invite comparisons to Yes, Genesis, IQ, and Arena, and the latter two are indeed relevant references, especially IQ.

This album was my first exposure to Mystery, but I have since searched out most of the band's other albums too. The verdict is still out on the other ones as I have only listened through them a few times, but I somehow suspect that One Among The Living will remain the band's best in my eyes.

A very good album!

Report this review (#833238)
Posted Friday, October 5, 2012 | Review Permalink
4 stars Mystery was one of those bands whose latest album appeared on Amazon's "Customers who bought (album) also bought (album)" widget. I sampled the latest album but it didn't seize me. Then I read that Benoit David of Yes notoriety was in the band. Really? I sampled "Beneath the Veil of Winter," "One among the Living," and "The World is a Game," before deciding on ordering OatL. The CD arrived a couple of days ago, and I am really enjoying it. It's an easy one to appreciate because the sound is loud and clean and the music has its fair share of heavy parts, which for me makes it easily enjoyable.

I have to say that I am really impressed with Benoit David here. Listening to him on "Fly from Here," it's hard not to compare him to Jon Anderson and seek out where he sounds good enough and where Jon Anderson is missed. But with Mystery there's no need to compare unless it is to compare any former vocalist with the band. David's voice really shines here and at times, when he gets a little rough edge in his voice as in "Between Love and Hate," and "The Falling Man," he sounds a bit like Triumph's Rik Emmett and Gil Moore combined (which I mean in a good way since I like many of Triumph's songs).

The album is heavier than I expected. There are many gentler acoustic guitar parts and some nice keyboard parts as in "Till the Truth Comes Out", but overall it's the heavy guitar in many songs that pleases me with its rich sound. When I was searching for a high resolution image of the album cover for my iTunes folder for this album, I was surprised to find this album mentioned on a Russian heavy metal site. But after listening to the album I noticed just how heavy it is at times, particularly "The Falling Man". Conversely, there are moments that seem to take the band to the edge of commercial pop before they save themselves. Interestingly, a couple of songs actually remind me of Triumph, particularly the last minute or so of, "Between Love and Hate." As neo-prog tends to include more commercially accessible approaches than symphonic prog and this album features a lot of heavy guitar and guitar solos supported by synthesizer, plus David's vocals are in the higher registers, it makes sense that some similarities to Triumph can be perceived. However, this is not to say that Mystery is a Triumph clone. Not at all! But their style is heavier than what I would have expected from a neo-prog band. Still, that seems to be the neo-prog direction these days, considering IQ's last two albums have been heavier and darker, Pallas's "XXV" is closer to metal and heavy prog than neo-prog, and even Pendragon have been including heavier guitar parts on their last three albums.

One thing that is interesting is the 22-minute plus suit "Through Different Eyes". The suite runs in six parts but each part is a separate track. This is similar to Yes's "Fly from Here," which is also in six individual parts that segue together. As I have been earnestly into progressive rock only in the last two years, I have heard epic tracks like Rush's "Fountain of Lamneth," which are actually separate songs of a theme that are under the banner of a single track, and tracks like Yes's "Closer to the Edge" which are more like a suite with movements." I prefer to hear a long song without many breaks between "movements". I see no point in calling a few separate songs a single track just because the songs tell a story. So this album by Mystery has my appreciation because the parts of the epic track can be enjoyed individually but also connect to the next track smoothly and sensibly so the whole suite stands as a whole.

Overall I am very pleased with this album which is also my introduction to the band. The music is not as complex as I had hoped and as I prefer but it is very good. I'll be checking out other albums later on.

Report this review (#847458)
Posted Wednesday, October 31, 2012 | Review Permalink
Honorary Collaborator
4 stars This is the album with which I first became aware of the Mystery sound--the rich, polished, emotional sound that, to these ears, epitomize all that is right with the Neo Prog movement. Replete with more-modern sounds that were pioneered by the Trick of the Tail and, especially, Wind and Wuthering albums and from which the Neo Prog movement was born, what makes Mystery such a delight to listen to is not just the wonderful standards set by their vocalists--here Benoît David--or the interesting and complex compositions of Michel St-Père or even the great evenly-distributed performances by the instrumentalists or even the oft-soul-melting melodies, but, for me, the anticipation of waiting for each electric guitar solo offered by Michel. His guitar play is so amazing, so melodic though technically proficient, that I find myself perking up every time I see him guesting on other people's albums.

1. "Among the Living" (1:13)

2. "Wolf" (5:53) a solid, varied rocker with great vocal and great instrumental contributions spread among all contributors. Benoît David has such a gorgeous voice--in the league with the Journey and the greats of the 80s hair bands. (9/10)

3. "Between Love And Hate" (5:53) a pretty straightforward heavy rocker, power chords and all, highlighted by a powerful guitar solo in the fourth minute. (8.25/10)

4. "Till The Truth Comes Out" (9:25) a gentle, emotional Neo Prog song, complete with syrupy layers of imitation strings to build into the full band breakout in the third minute. Interesting time shift at 3:45 into a more dynamic, multi-instrumental instrumental section. Awesome! Wonderful performances by all. (17.75/20)

5. "Kameleon Man" (5:01) another heavy rocker, more in the vein of 1980s hair bands, spiced up a little by some awesome precision lead guitar work and Oliver Wakeman's CAMEL-esque Moog solo in the middle. (8.25/10)

- "Through Different Eyes" (suite) (22:34) (41.5/45): 6. "I. When Sorrow Turns To Pain" (3:56) standard fare, not Benoît's best vocal melody. (8.25/10) 7. "II. Apocalyptic Visions Of Paradise" (1:48) Hackett/Genesis-like instrumental interlude. (5/5) 8. "III. So Far Away" (5:51) tender, 12-string arpeggi-based. Pretty, nice vocal melodies. Builds to an awesome bass pedal crescendo. (8.75/10) 9. "IV. The Point Of No Return" (2:21) a spacey-industrial expression of war-like conflict. (4.5/5) 10. "V. The Silent Scream" (5:57) back to sensitive acoustic guitar-based, Benoît's vocal here is similar to modern RPI singers like Alessio Calandario--more straight-foward and raw, powerful yet vulnerable, emotional. Michel picks up the vocal melody with his electric guitar and does what we've really been waiting for: he soars. When Benoît returns, it is in a higher octave--soaring in a way to match Michel's guitar while those deep bass and bass pedal lows keep killing us. Michel really lights it up in the second half. Wow! Amazing! (10/10) 11. "VI. Dancing With Butterflies" (2:42) returning to the opening lyrics and themes, vocals expressing through multiple tracks, keys and guitars flying steady and free beneath, the song wends its way to a long, gorgeous dénouement and fade with seagull noises and children's laughter. (5/5)

12. "One Among The Living" (6:27) great sound from the start, very GENESIS-like, with Banksian keys and Hackett-esque guitar and Collins-like drum patterning. Even when it goes heavy at 2:30, the ensuing section is awesome and still very much in the Genesis-vein. Not my favorite vocal or lyric, definitely an amazing composition and sound. Best song on the album. (9.5/10)

13. "The Falling Man" (7:39) based on an ominous repeating 10-chord sequence of chunky bass and guitar power chords, Benoît sings in his best DEF LEPPARD voice while all instrumentalists do their best to promote and maintain that heavy substrate. A couple surprise twists are short-lived and only temporary tangents, the music always returning to that 10-chord base. Well done, great whole-band discipline. (13/15)

14. "Sailing On A Wing" (4:55) classic Neo Prog song, great vocal melody hook and awesome lead guitar work. (9/10)

B+/4.5 stars; a near-masterpiece of progressive rock music and the album that skyrockets Mystery into the top echelon of Neo Prog.

Report this review (#879369)
Posted Thursday, December 20, 2012 | Review Permalink
Mellotron Storm
3 stars 3.5 stars. Benoit David certainly made a name for himself when he became part of YES and in turn it's given his band MYSTERY a higher profile amongst Prog fans. This is a 69 minute concept album that I find has some real highs but it also like most concept albums of this length I find a lot of average moments where I lose interest. And while Benoit is one heck of a singer I do tire of his voice before this one ends. As others have mentioned there is an AOR element to what's going on here and the vocals are a part of that.

"Among The Living" is the short intro track that i'm not that fond of. "Wolf" is one i'm really fond of though. There's an emotion to this tune that really draws me in. Great chorus too ! "Between Love And Hate" is mellow to start with laid back guitar as the reserved vocals join in. It picks up before 1 1/2 minutes. I like the guitar here. "Till The Truth Comes Out" has some violin and flute early with atmosphere then the relaxed vocals come in. An emotional tune that is done very well. It certainly turns more passionate later on. Excellent song.

"Kameleon Man" features John Jowitt on bass and Oliver Wakeman gives us a moog solo. Despite this it's one of my least favourite tracks. We then get the over 22 minutes "Through Different Eyes" suite that is divided into six parts. Love the bass on the fourth section. "One Among The Living" opens with lots of atmosphere before the vocals arrive and the sound changes. This is like a reprise of the first track "Among The Living". It's okay. "The Falling Man" is darker and heavier than anything else on here. "Sailing On A Wing" is the uplifting closer that is well done.

A good album that I think fans of Neo-Prog as well as fans of concept albums will eat up with joy. Not quite my cup of java but there's no question this is a talented band. Well done.

Report this review (#918162)
Posted Saturday, February 23, 2013 | Review Permalink
3 stars Produced during Benoit David's tenure as the lead singer of Yes, Mystery's One Among the Living is an album which is gets by mainly on the strength of David's vocal performance. It's not that he does anything hyper-original or unexpected with his vocals - there's no Mike Patton-esque versatility on display or Robert Wyatt-styled explorations of the potential of the human voice as an instrument in its own right - and for that matter, the music doesn't offer any major departures from prog rock as usual. However, what David does offer is a mixture of confidence and genuine emotional conviction. Rarely have I believed that a singer in prog has believed in the words he's singing to the extent I believe when Benoit David sings, despite some occasional Yes-esque obscurity. I don't always know what he's getting at but he always communicates what he feels - that's an achievement in itself, and I can see why he was seen as a safe pair of hands for Yes.
Report this review (#943670)
Posted Sunday, April 14, 2013 | Review Permalink
4 stars Mystery was actually my prime example of a faceless genre-band that knows precisely how to please its fans. My recent hunger for modern (neo)prog vinyls led me to investigate their discography once more when I stumbled upon 'One Among the Living' ? which by the way is their last album that was (sadly) not printed on a vinyl.

Sound-wise Mystery's 'One Among the Living' (2010) combines a classic AOR sound with modern neo- progressive music. The vocalist Benoit David rose to fame as lead-singer of a Yes tribute band and was asked to fill in John Andersons spot in Yes during their 'In the Present Tour' and the recording of 'Fly From Here'. At the heart of Mystery's music we find multi-instrumentalist and producer Michel St-Pere, who has worked with different line-ups to further the band since its conception. The album has a long list of guest musicians, but I would never have guessed it when listening to this very cohesive, professional and well though-out album.

On paper this could never have worked for me; part AOR sound, Yes / John Anderson style vocals - and no less then 70 minutes of it. Yet this album grabbed my full attention from the moment it started. An effect that reminds me of how hypnotized Arena's 'Contagion' still gets me. The often dubbed high-pitched vocals of Benoit in echoey landscapes create a real atmosphere. During acoustic moments it reminds me of that magical space-folk sound. Its great to hear such a great produced album that can summon that 'obscure' feel. The band can also rock out at moments, with guitars that have that Metallica twin guitar edge. On 'The Falling Man' the band goes as far to create a perfect neo-prog meets Black Sabbath doom track, which is chilling! Whereas the band at first glance sounds like an AOR group, this association starts to vanish when familiarizing with the record. Neo-prog records are seldom better then the detail of their production, and I would say this is one of the best produced - and detailed - records of the genre. All of the genre clichés may be present, but the band treats them with awareness and usually comes up with an interesting twist. The ability to really grap a person with a performance surely is early Marillion's strongest asset, yet so many bands get lost in keyboard one keyboard part after another. Here almost all the songs have that quality to achieve individuality with strong performances of good melodic pieces. The album's mandatory epic 'Through Different Eyes' is a strong succession of songs. Furthermore, it shows proper restraint. The parts could work on their own and do actually improve in their successive impact.

Conclusion. Though this album by Mystery has received much praise at the time, it is actually overshadowed by its (to my ears) lackluster formula-prog successors. On this album Mystery (Michel St-Pere) showcases a deep 'knowing' and appreciation of the genre. The production sounds great in the living room, headphones - even in my small car. In my opinion 'One Among the Living' deserves to be mentioned along-side with the better works of Arena, IQ and Pendragon.

What about a vinyl re-release? Please..?

Report this review (#2265822)
Posted Wednesday, October 2, 2019 | Review Permalink
3 stars My Highlights: - Wolf - Between Love & Hate - Till the truth comes out - Through Different eyes (i thru vi) - Sailing on a wing

Another excellent Canadian Neo prog band, with some symphonic and metal nuances but mostly melodic and bright. For some reason I find some classic heavy metal influences on this band, from acts such as Scorpions maybe, I think Benoit's vocals are the ones giving that familiar "look and feel" throughout this album. Majestic and Magical, the melodies here are so brilliant and beautiful that could have been easily taken from the same script as Jackson's We are the World and Heal the World...yes, that's how beautiful they are. However is even better than that because those same melodies are placed inside a circle of progressive and symphonic moments that inevitably wraps the listener never letting him leave and guaranteeing a full musical experience.

The enchanting and dreamy trio of songs that follow the album's intro are suddenly disrupted by the only song that I consider a filler in this particular album, Kameleon man, not that I dislike it at all, is just that I don't feel it belongs here. The +20mins suite "Through Different eyes" is definitely the pinnacle moment of this amazing record with outstanding guitar playing by St-Père and lyrics so deep they will still be playing in your head hours after the first listen. Then the last trio of songs lead to a mellower but darker sound letting it fade and leaving the listener craving for a second round. Beautiful piece of art, strongly recommended!

Report this review (#2594118)
Posted Sunday, September 12, 2021 | Review Permalink
4 stars WOW...another great neo whose only shortcoming is that they are not more widely known!

First, I must digress. Rewind the clock to the early 2010s...'Yes Clone Appreciation Month' begins when Jon Anderson blows out his vocal chords and ends when Benoit David (pronounced Ben-WA Da-VEED) serves up his own on a plate about a month later while fans admit 'there really is only one Jon Anderson'.

[Digression continues] That ill-fated event occurred years ago (cut me some slack folks!). Anderson and Howe are the only members of the original quintet still extant; Mr. White having published a creepy looking CD under his own namesake just before exiting planet earth one year and one month to this day.

David sang some super good stuff before getting ousted by someone not as good; bringing us fast forward to the current epoch. Calling his group Mystery (actually led by Monsieur St. Pere) a Yes clone is not really fair. When someone excels in football we don't call him or her a Lionel Messi clone (in American football a Tom Brady clone)...

Now for the current task: this review is for the album 'One Among the Living' but I feel the review and the rating could apply equally to both that and the album 'The World is a Game'. It is actually quite easy to review these without going into detail about which songs are better than others: the material is consistently neo and consistently good, and the originality level is high, something to which I attach a high value. There is a distant ring of Rush or Journey but it is just that - distant. There aren't many "weak spots", if any.

The balance of vocals to instrumentation is also near-perfect. All I can say is, if you like prog, buy this album. If you like neo-prog, buy this album. A solid 4 stars - no more no less.

Report this review (#2935633)
Posted Monday, June 26, 2023 | Review Permalink

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