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METHEXIS

Crossover Prog • Greece


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Methexis biography
Founded in Athens, Greece in 2011

Greek project METHEXIS is the creative vehicle of Nikitas KISSONAS (ex-VERBAL DELIRIUM, ex-YIANNEIS). And it was following the release of VERBAL DELIRIUM's debut album that Kissonas hit the studio, to record music he had been working on for many years himself. With the aid of drummer Nikos MIRAS, and invaluable assistance by sound engineer Leonidas Petropolous, an album's worth of material unfolded, and was finalized as the CD ''The Fall of Bliss'' in 2011. An album aspiring to acknowledge the heritage of 1970's progressive rock whilst incorporating elements from music of a more contemporary origin, placed within a conceptual framework.

Following the release of this initial production, preparations for a second Methexis CD have begun. This time also involving additional musicians applying their skills to the proceedings. In February 2015 METHEXIS release their second album ''Suiciety'', which is ''a concept album about the exterior influences a human gets from his childhood, the interior research for a guiding instrument, the exposition on a suicidal society that doesn't listen to the clear warnings and the unavoidable collapse''. Nikitas teams with members of THE ENID, ÄNGLAGÅRD, BIRDS & BUILDINGS, AGENTS OF MERCY and YIANNEIS to deliver this second album, including, among others, Joe PAYNE (Vocals), Linus KÅSE (Keyboards), Nikos ZADES (Sound Design), Walle WAHLGREN (Drums), and Brett D'ANON (Bass).

For a new direction in 2016 Nikitas Kissonas joined forces with Mampre KASARDJIAN (bass), Haris BOTSIS (keyboards) and Theodore CHRISTODOULOU (drums) turning Methexis into a four piece formation, but already one year later Methexis went down to a power trio, performing all around Greece. In 2018 Methexis released its third album entitled "Topos", it is instrumental CD, and for the first time also available on vinyl.

About making music in Greece. "Nowadays it is easier to make an album thanks to today's technology, even collaborate through the internet! But the problems come with doing concerts. And you need an audience for this. Unfortunately Greece's prog audience isn't vast so we have to limit ourselves in few gigs. It is also difficult to do rehearsals because everyone is working the whole day or doesn't have a job so they don't have money to pay a rehearsal studio or even transport. Touring is expensive both in Greece and even more trying outside Greece because of heavy airport taxes. Making mu...
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METHEXIS discography


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METHEXIS top albums (CD, LP, MC, SACD, DVD-A, Digital Media Download)

3.68 | 53 ratings
The Fall Of Bliss
2011
3.93 | 87 ratings
Suiciety
2015
3.94 | 30 ratings
Topos
2018

METHEXIS Live Albums (CD, LP, MC, SACD, DVD-A, Digital Media Download)

METHEXIS Videos (DVD, Blu-ray, VHS etc)

METHEXIS Boxset & Compilations (CD, LP, MC, SACD, DVD-A, Digital Media Download)

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METHEXIS Reviews


Showing last 10 reviews only
 Topos by METHEXIS album cover Studio Album, 2018
3.94 | 30 ratings

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Topos
Methexis Crossover Prog

Review by kev rowland
Special Collaborator Honorary Reviewer

4 stars Nikitas Kissonas returned in 2018 with his third release under the Methexis banner which saw him return to his way of working om the debut, providing most of the music himself. He is joined by Konstantinos Kefalas (trumpet), Nikolas Nikolopoulos (flutes) and Theodore Christodoulou (drums) while pianist Panagiotis Krabis features on one track, but Nikitas provides guitar, bass, and keyboards. This album contains two instrumental tracks, both approximately 20 minutes long, so this fits quite nicely on the vinyl release. It is a very long way from the previous album, as for the most part this is bridging progressive rock with classical, with some wonderfully dated keyboards melding together with the brass. One of the highlights is the way that the symphonic darkness can just blast into guitar runs, or a trumpet can take the lead, and one is never sure where the musical path is going to take us.

This is progressive music which can be bombastic one second and drop into quiet reflection the next, take off at pace or reduce to a crawl. King Crimson is again an influence, but so is David Bedford and Mike Oldfield. There are jazz elements, folk, metal: musically this is truly progressive as it brings together elements from many different places and then somehow makes sense of it all. It is exciting, but there are also times when there is a pause for reflection, but normally just before the music goes off on yet another tangent. Whereas the previous album felt like a band with a singer and shorter numbers, this feels more like a set of musicians working from a score, working together to bring a composer's work to life. This is a very deep and intense piece, one where the listener really needs to give it the attention and time that it deserves. It never ceases to surprise as it is takes paths less travelled with seemingly disconnected sections adding their depth to the whole.

I enjoyed the other two albums by Nikitas, but this is far more essential and worthy of serious contemplation to work out what I have just heard. Dynamic, orchestral and powerful, one wonders what he is going to come up with next.

 Suiciety by METHEXIS album cover Studio Album, 2015
3.93 | 87 ratings

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Suiciety
Methexis Crossover Prog

Review by kev rowland
Special Collaborator Honorary Reviewer

4 stars Last year I came across the debut album by Jargon, 'The Fading Thought', which featured among the musicians Nikitas Kissonas on guitar. Like John 'Jargon' Kosmidis, Kissonas has also been with Verbal Delirium but for me he was Methexis, whose debut album 'The Fall of Bliss' I had reviewed some years earlier. That led me to contacting him after a period of some years and discovering that he had released two more albums under that banner since then. 'Suiciety' was released in 2015 and saw a dramatic change for Nikitas in that he brought in other musicians, and while he arranged everything, he actually only played guitars. The most obvious difference was the introduction of John Payne on vocals, who at the time was with The Enid. Apparently Nikitas was hugely impressed with the vocals on 'Invicta', which is why he got John involved. The other musicians were Linus Kåse (keyboards, Brighteye Brison, Änglagård), Walle Wahlgren (drums), and Brett d'Anon (bass), while there were also string and brass sections. This never sounds like a project, but rather like a full band, and it is only by reading the small print in the digipak that one realizes that the musicians all recorded separately in their own studios, and never actually played together.

The production is excellent, and one of the reasons it works so well is that everyone is given the opportunity to shine, yet nothing ever becomes ever too self-indulgent. It is a fresh album, one where the songs all have a purpose and direction, no meaningless meandering here. The guitar lines are fresh and clean, but the same can be said for all the musical elements, which are allowed to breathe and thrive. Nikitas describes this concept album as "a comment on contemporary society and as an experiment on collaboration", and one can say that in both areas it works very well indeed. It is not always a happy go lucky album, with some dissonance and minor keys which act on the emotions, yet it is also uplifting and declinate. There is an inner strength and power here, with "Prey's Prayer" being probably the best example of all elements coming together, with brass, guitars and keyboards all having their part to play while the warm bass is often the founding force. King Crimson is an obvious influence at times, but like Fripp himself, that covers a multitude of styles from ballad-style rock to those where fractured guitar and effects take centre stage. The delicacy on "Sunlight", with its acoustic guitar and beautiful vocals, is simply sublime but it does not commence like that at all.

This is complex multi-layered progressive rock which is an absolute delight from beginning to end and certainly worthy of close investigation by those who want their prog to not be too experimental, yet also different from the rest of the scene, with plenty of powerful moments contained within.

 Topos by METHEXIS album cover Studio Album, 2018
3.94 | 30 ratings

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Topos
Methexis Crossover Prog

Review by TenYearsAfter

4 stars "Good news from Greece!"

What a coincidence, I just finished my serie of reviews about the early King Crimson albums (the 40th Anniversary Edition), then I started to listen to this new Methexis CD, to me it sounds like the experimental side of, indeed, early King Crimson (1970-1975 era). This third Methexis album is my first musical encounter with Greek prog since I listened to Aphrodites Child, PLJ Band and Akritas in the late Eighties. The musical brainchild of the Methexis project is multi-instrumentalist Nikitas Kissonas, he plays guitar, bass and keyboards, along his work as composer, arranger and producer, and he played in the alternative Greek bands Verbal Delirium and Yianneis. The debut album The Fall Of Bliss was released at the same year and Nikitas Kissonas played most of the instruments. Three years later new material was composed recorded, together with musicians of the new prog generation: from Joe Payne (The Enid), Linus K'se ('nglag'rd, Brighteye Bison) and Nikos Zades (Yianneis, Mother 'n Son) to Walle Wahlgren (Agents Of Mercy, Lalle Larsson). The second album Suiciety was released in 2015 and, like The Fall Of Bliss, an independent production. For a new direction in 2016 Nikitas Kissonas joined forces with Mampre Kasardjian (bass), Haris Botsis (keyboards) and Theodore Christodoulou (drums) turning Methexis into a four piece formation, but already one year later Methexis went down to a power trio, performing all around Greece. In 2018 Methexis its third album entitled Topos was released, it is instrumental and for the first time also on vinyl.

1. Topos 1 (19:28) : This first epic composition contains several very short parts that range from hypnotizing sound collages to experimental musical landscapes. But my focus is on the longer parts, what a captivating and adventurous blend of prog, jazz, metal and jazzrock, these musicians love to scout musical boundaries: the one moment heavy guitar riffs with lush Hammond organ or fiery electric guitar and jazzy piano, the other moment a sumptuous church organ interlude, then a mellow atmosphere with trumpet and xylophone and finally a swinging rhythm with trumpet. Or first soaring Mellotron violins in a menacing climate, gradually turning into 'organized chaos' with heavy guitar and thunderous drums. That element can also be heard in the final part of this composition, first dreamy with trumpet and synthesizer runs, then a stacccato Hammond sound and propulsive drum beats and finally again that 'organized chaos' (with fiery guitar and a bombastic atmosphere), once a King Crimson trademark between 1970 and 1975.

2.Topos 2 (20:52) : This second epic composition delivers also a lot of variety, adventure and surprising musical ideas. From mellow with piano and acoustic guitar to a slow rhythm with flute and soaring keyboards. And from experimental with fat synthesizer flights and trumpet to a swinging rhythm with a mandoline sound. The final two parts are my personal highlights in this album. Part Four starts with tender piano and flute, then a slow rhythm with trombone, soaring keyboards and piano, halfway culminating in splendid guitar solo, evoking Jan Akkerman in his best Focus days, very powerful and compelling. The conclusion delivers a sparkling piano solo, what an unique prog music! The final Part Five is even more exciting: a tight beat, powerful rock guitar and distorted electric guitar runs, gradually the music turns into heavy and bombastic (a dark undertone, like King Crimson on Red) with biting electric guitar and a thunderous rhythm-section. The closing section is another fine surprising musical idea by Methexis: a swinging rhythm with piano and trumpet '. yes, this band loves to be a musical Pandora's Box!

This is fascinating and adventurous, but also complex and very varied, genuine progressive rock. If you are up to a blend of many different styles, with the focus on experimental and avant-garde (like early King Crimson but also current Italian prog band DAAL), I highly recommended this music!

P.s.: I hope there will be soon room on PA to review current prog bands/artists Encircled, The Adekaem, Fizbers, 41Point9, Laura Meade, and Pollard, Daniel, Booth and Dean Baker (both EM).

 Topos by METHEXIS album cover Studio Album, 2018
3.94 | 30 ratings

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Topos
Methexis Crossover Prog

Review by BrufordFreak
Collaborator Honorary Collaborator

4 stars Nikitas Kissonas is back with another serious contribution to the evolution of progressive rock music with an all- instrumental set of two "side-long" pieces that are structured much more like symphonies than rock songs.

1. "Topos 1" (19:28) a spacious, multi-faceted, symphonic creation which relies much less on rock constructs and traditional rock sounds (though they're there) than anything I've heard from Nikitas before. It's as if I'm listening to a combined instrumental performance of 1970s KING CRIMSON with Gabriel-era GENESIS: stark and industrial while still, oddly, pastoral and folk-friendly. This is going to take me many listens to fully appreciate, to fully judge. It's length makes it very difficult to get a grasp on a holistically. (9/10)

2. "Topos 2" (20:52) opens like blending of a Mark Isham soundtrack with Mike Oldfield's Hergest Ridge and a Villalobos guitar concerto. At the end of the sixth minute synthesized sounds take over on every level, then the electronic is woven within the symphonic (or vice-versa). At the end of the ninth minute the introduction of jazz guitar, fretless bass, and more-staccato trumpet play shift the music more into the domain of jazz. At 10:15 5he computerized click track ends and we transition briefly into a Greek folk ditty before returning to a slowed down, bare-bones, note-by-note version of the opening section. At 11:30 a bombastic drum entrance and blaring trumpet solo announce the arrival of a plaintive, "ballad" section. Electric guitar solos in a blues-rock fashion over the piano and slow rock rhythm section. I feel we are building--building in emotion, building in tension, building toward some further explosive exposition. Guitar moves into upper octaves to continue its cries before grand piano does some neat soloing over a very-Mike Oldfield-like section. Again, building and building, slowly, toward some crescendo or dénouement. But no! At the 16:00 mark we stop and switch into an entirely new style, new driving tempo, new sound combination, and melodic theme. The tempos and soundscapes continues to build, shift, clutter and clear, while an eerie space-synth solos in the background. Just shy of the 19 minute mark the lead switches to edgy electric guitar in an angular solo reminiscent of one Robert of Fripp. But then, rather suddenly, at the 20 minute mark, everything shifts into a Latin sound fusion for the finish! Weird! Again, I'm going to have to hear that one many more times in order to get an overall sense of what I'm experiencing. (9/10)

4.5 Stars; a near-masterpiece of eclectic symphonic progressive rock music.

 Topos by METHEXIS album cover Studio Album, 2018
3.94 | 30 ratings

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Topos
Methexis Crossover Prog

Review by Antonis Kalamoutsos

4 stars The lonely and difficult paths are the ones that lead to the most beautiful places.

Regular humans in their everyday lives try to keep the forces of chaos at bay, those forces that indicate randomness and the unpredictable and fragile nature of existence itself, remaining closely attached to the forces of order. Well, everyone is entitled to have an opinion of Art and mine is that art should function the other way around, forcing the creator to avoid Order and its linear conservatism and to pursue the fleeting, the chaotic and his/her creative momentum.

The thoughts above came to my mind after listening to Topos since I can't explain or describe differently the total twist of linearity attempted by Nikitas Kissonas and his creative vehicle Methexis. Their 2015 album Suiciety gained excellent reviews by being an ambitious concept that combined social sensitivities with 'normal' progressive rock, music with vocals and eclectic jazz, funk and rock influences. Nevertheless, instead of safely leaning on their achievement, they set sail with Topos to new and unexpected directions.

Topos (translated as'' place'') is consisted of two 20 minutes long instrumental tracks that cannot easily be described with popular music terms. ''Topos I'' kicks off with a traditional prog rock riff, with its odd time signature, off beat dynamics and everything but it is soon proved that it was just an intro. What follows is a 'cinematic' orgy of alternating sound horizons, an epic journey where Light and Dark fail to eliminate or to be eliminated but travel together, tightly held to one another. The sense of colour intensively comes to mind: this is a composition with very colourful and wide arrangements and instrumentation, demonstrating the fact that Kissonas gets the best out of his bandmates, T. Christodoulou (Drums), N. Nikolopoulos (Flutes), K. Kefalas (Trumpets) and P. Krabis (Piano). ''Topos II'' has the same conceptual roots but a feels a bit more dense as a composition, with more parts, a bit more complicated textures and obviously being more guitar oriented. Both tracks are as recitative and fragmentary as they should, though prog rock fans may prefer the fusion mood of ''Topos II'' a bit more. Kissonas offers the listener the option of listening the tracks in 'slices' (in 8 and 5 parts respectively), I wouldn't suggest this easy road to anyone though, a road in which big picture gets blurry and shimmering. I recommend the experience of the undivided, cohesive listening.

One needs to focus on two points of great significance, starting with the production. If Methexis had chosen a slightly more vintage and 'warm' sound, they would build a bridge with music released in the past by prog giants like ELP or King Crimson, thus they could sound a bit more likeable, at least to a specific audience. By choosing a wide and modern production instead, they construct an environment that equally relates to prog, contemporary classical and cinematic music.

But the best feature of all is a well-hidden detail. Almost any creator in Kissonas' place would rather guide the listener to the conceptual and thematic roots of the album, chewing up the 'whys' and 'becauses' of the described 'place' for him/her. On the contrary, in the credit notes he clearly states ' Imagine your own place', respecting in this way the primary and chaotic function of art, in which the creator should have no control over the creation when it reaches the senses of the receiver. Willingly or not, he lets Topos free for the listener to make it his own, with no guidance, no self-suggestions, no Order.

As I have written elsewhere, 'Methexis keep releasing one amazing album after the other under our unsuspicious noses'. Regardless of the final evaluation, Topos is an album that has to be checked out by everyone who believes that music has to be an adventure and something more that simple or refined fun. Methexis' greatest triumph though is not the release of a remarkable album but leaving us righteously eager to see what they will do next. We should welcome the chaos of art upon our well settled lives.

So follow, if you will, that lonely and hard path and discover for yourself if it will lead you into a beautiful place. Travel lightly.

Originally written for againstthesilence.com

 Suiciety by METHEXIS album cover Studio Album, 2015
3.93 | 87 ratings

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Suiciety
Methexis Crossover Prog

Review by Windhawk
Special Collaborator Honorary Collaborator

4 stars Greek venture METHEXIS is the creative vehicle of composer and musician Nikitas Kissonas. He appeared back in 2011 with the first album released under this name, at that point a strict one-man project. The second album "Suiciety" has been created with additional musicians involved on all levels, and was self-released in 2015.

If you have a tendency to enjoy conceptual albums with a stark, dark and bleak character to the landscapes explored, and that the music is a fairly demanding variety of progressive rock with liberal amounts of jazz-oriented as well as orchestral details used to enhance the almost harrowing sound pictures painted, then this second album by Methexis is one that most likely warrants an inspection. Progressive rock fueled doom-laden gloom with plenty of dramatic and theatrical moments, and a liberal amount of bleak despair as something of a key character trait.

 Suiciety by METHEXIS album cover Studio Album, 2015
3.93 | 87 ratings

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Suiciety
Methexis Crossover Prog

Review by tszirmay
Special Collaborator Honorary Collaborator

4 stars Stylish Greek prog musician Nikitas Kissonas is back with a voluptuous second effort that surpasses his impressive debut (2011's The Fall of Bliss) by a rather large margin. That initial introduction showed off the technical prowess of a multi-instrumentalist who also had a firm grasp on composing material that would not in a way shame the progressive market. For this sophomore effort, Nikitas spared no expense in bringing in some exemplary musicians to adorn his craftsmanship and really let him concentrate on the material and his electric guitar and let the others carry the load. Bringing in Linus Kase (of Anglagard and Brighteye Bison fame) on keyboards was a bright decision, inviting a startling vocalist like Joe Payne (the Enid) was an even bolder move as Nikitas was not really consistent on the microphone and finally, hooking up with slick drummer Walle Wahlgren (Agents of Mercy, Lalle Larsson) really gave the needed pulse to forge forward.

A glooming critique of the current 21st century malaise which has hit Greece harder than any other European country, the overall mood is therefore not flower-power pastoral but doomsday apocalyptic. The opening salvo 'Ruins' is eerily atmospheric, as if a soundtrack for some sombre occasion.

Shock to the system is the rollicking and jazzy urgency of 'Remember, Fear is a Relic', totally unexpected party-like fare, where the musicians seem to be enjoying themselves amid the doom and gloom, the vocal is oddly bizarre as Joe Payne has one of the most versatile and powerfully diverse voices in prog, here doing some Gino Vannelli meets Manhattan Transfer stylings that are out of this worldly. Psychedelic, jazzy, oddball and original, this piece really is an ear opener. Linus unleashes some Hammond drizzle, bassist Brett D'Anon and Wahlgren really muscle forward with sterling control.

There is an obvious sense of insanity, as on the very Legendary Pink Dots-like intermezzo 'The Windows cracking'' as well as the follow up 'Who Can it Be?' a peculiar blend of horns, dissonance, almost RIO-like movements and ungraspable orchestrations that defy logic. Suddenly, a Spanish guitar solo spot usurps the spotlight, only to veer into a nearly Canterbury mood, totally unexpected and infectious. Shrieking guitars, insane synth noodling, collapsing percussion and brass support cavalry make this quite an unusual suspect. This segues into the irony laden (Pain meaning Payne) 'The Origins of Blame', a short track that while humorous and quirky, is something that leaves me confused. Not really symphonic but certainly highly eccentric and theatrical.

Things finally start providing goose bumps when Nikitas picks up his electric guitar and shows his considerable mettle. 'Prey's Prayer' is a highlight track, of that there is little doubt. He lights up the proceedings with an instrumental showcase that is classic prog, at times bluesy, almost Floydian and then revving it up considerably a la Jeff Beck. The horns come in to add some sheen and sunshine to it all. Bravo!

Two 8 minute + pieces enter the fray, securing the foundation for this strange recording, 'Sunlight' warms the heart with acoustic guitar, piano, string section and a pleading vocal. The sound is at first pastoral and serene, eliciting gentle reverie and morphs into a more complex workout that darkens the horizons with expert playing and shifting rhythmic excursions, the piano in particular searching out free jazz soloing. Payne has quite a dramatic voice on him, scouring the outer limits of modulation, hitting impossible notes that will make your head spin. The second piece is 'The Relic', also starting off with dreamy beginnings, a highly vulnerable delivery that exudes deep introspection, both lyrically as well as instrumentally. Hesitant and pained (sorry Joe, can't help myself), the vocals set out to impress deeply by its genuineness and afterglow, kept aligned by strong rhythmic sustenance from Mr. Wahlgren, sweeping synthesizers and a whole orchestrated wall of sound. Return to the pastoral theme for another round, this time the bass guitar leading the way ahead, slick beats and piano escorts, serenaded by sultry violins that scream out beauty.

The title track finishes off this sophomore opus, a fine companion to the debut. Nervy, edgy, brooding and a tad morose, the bellicose drums unleash a torrent of energetic angst amid the synthesized stew, the expressed themes are foreboding and scary. No nice Hollywood ending here, progfans. Halfway through, the feel veers towards King Crimson-like oddness, with plenty of percussive dalliances and whopping symphonics. The distant voice bids a final farewell'' On the right track, Nikitas!

4 group kool aids

 Suiciety by METHEXIS album cover Studio Album, 2015
3.93 | 87 ratings

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Suiciety
Methexis Crossover Prog

Review by bhikkhu
Special Collaborator Symphonic Prog Team

4 stars Having very much enjoyed "The Fall of Bliss," I welcomed the opportunity to hear the follow up. That does not necessarily mean the expectation of another good album was a given. Sophomore releases tend to be either an improvement or a disappointment. "Suiciety" is not only an improvement on an impressive debut, it is a truly great album!

Nikitas Kissonas deserves a lot of credit for playing all the instruments on the first outing. He pulled it of without the lack of a band being obvious. Bringing in an actual band this time around seems to have unleashed previously untapped potential. And what a line up it is, including members of Änglagård and Birds and Buildings, a horn section and strings. The ability of the musicians to play off of one another brings an energy and groove that wasn't present before.

The compositions may be a bit stronger as well. Whether that has anything to do with the instrumental resources available or not, I don't know. What I do know is that the tracks on "Suiciety" are all captivating. There is never a time when the mind is allowed to wander. Each idea flows seamlessly into the next and never overstays its welcome. The darkness found on "The Fall of Bliss" is still present but they are light moments often brought out in rousing jams. The softer moments play counterpoint and move the concept forward.

All the musicians are in top form but I have to single out Joe Payne for his vocals. He brings passion and strength to lyrics, knowing when to rock and when subtlety is best. There all also times when I swear he is channeling Matthew Parmenter, especially on "The Origin of Pain." The influence was there on the debut as well which leads me to believe Nikitas is a pretty big Discipline fan. Another influence on the vocals could be The Divine Baze Orchestra. Many times it would be hard to discern Joe from Oliver Eek, at least stylistically.

Methexis may be listed in Crossover but Modern Symphonic would be more appropriate. "Suiciety" bears this out even more than "The Fall of Bliss." The statement is not made just because of the strings, horns and the tracks being broken down into movements. Those facts however should not be ignored. The only track that does not obviously exhibit symphonic structure is "Chapter I (exterior) - Remember, Fear's A Relic." There, yes, but somewhat obscured by the hot jam. But I digress.

No matter how you break it down 'Suiciety' is great album with a modern feel that has appeal across fans of many different genres (and sub-genres). Methexis is a project that deserves attention and could very well be of the forces bringing prog into the future.

H.T. Riekels

p.s. 4.5 stars actually

 Suiciety by METHEXIS album cover Studio Album, 2015
3.93 | 87 ratings

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Suiciety
Methexis Crossover Prog

Review by Mellotron Storm
Prog Reviewer

4 stars Nikitas Kissonas is back! This talented Greek blessed us back in 2011 with his debut "The Fall Of Bliss" which really impressed me, it was really a one man show with Nikitas taking care of almost everything but the drumming where thankfully he didn't use a drum machine but brought in a real drummer. This time it's much different with many musicians helping out including a brass quintet, a string quintet and guests from bands such as THE ENID, ANGLAGARD, AGENTS OF MERCY, BIRDS & BUILDINGS and more. I will say I actually enjoy Nikitas' voice more than Joe Payne's but that's just me. This is a concept album, sort of a commentary on today's society with the clever title of "Suiciety".

"Ruins" opens with 2 minutes of atmosphere with spacey sounds before the music turns even more spacey with whispered words. Spoken words follow then he's almost singing. What a great way to start. "Remember Fear's A Relic" opens with strummed guitar before bass and a full sound take over. The organ really stands out and we get horns as well. Passionate vocals join in and they become high pitched before 3 minutes reminding me of 3RD DEGREE. Catchy stuff. It turns surprisingly jazzy before 5 minutes followed by some killer organ. It sounds like they are having a party on this one. "The Windows' Cracking Sound" is a short piece with almost spoken vocals and sparse sounds before the drums kick in late and dominate. It ends as it began. "Who Can It Be?" starts with horns sounding medieval as almost spoken vocals arrive around a minute. The horns take over once again as these two themes are contrasted. A jazzy vibe before 4 minutes then drums and horns lead 5 minutes in before it turns surprisingly heavy. Nice. "The Origin Of Blame" opens with pulsating piano and vocals before the organ arrives 1 1/2 minutes in with a fuller sound. Back to the piano and vocals quickly though. Some theatrical vocals here then it kicks back into gear before 3 minutes and they seem to be having lots of fun.

"Prey's Prayer" is a PINK FLOYD-like tune with those lazy guitar melodies. Horns arrive around 5 minutes to the end replacing the guitar. "Sunlight" opens with guitar expressions then strummed guitar after a minute as reserved vocals join in as well. Strings 2 1/2 minutes in then it turns fuller 4 minutes in followed by a heavier sound. The song ends in such a good way as an earlier theme with vocals is repeated. "The Relic" starts with acoustic guitar as vocals and strings join in. This is beautiful and when the vocals stop briefly and the bass and piano come in it continues to be gorgeous and really emotional for me. A heavier instrumental section kicks in with electric guitar before 3 1/2 minutes before stopping suddenly before 5 minutes and you here someone exhale. The opening theme is back to end it. What a song! "Suiciety" has lots of beats to start and it turns fuller just before we get a calm. Heavy percussion, strings and more kick in then another calm before 4 minutes then it builds to a powerful soundscape. Vocal melodies come in over the final minute.

I listened to the debut today just for a fresh comparison and to my ears these two albums are very comparable with this new one being slightly better. Both are well worth tracking down, thanks Nikitas!

 Suiciety by METHEXIS album cover Studio Album, 2015
3.93 | 87 ratings

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Suiciety
Methexis Crossover Prog

Review by zravkapt
Special Collaborator Honorary Collaborator

4 stars This is the second album from Greek musician Nikitas Kissonas and a major improvement over the debut album from 2011. While The Fall Of Bliss was merely good this follow-up is great. Basically Nikitas was a one-man-band on the debut but here he is backed by other musicians, only playing guitar himself. Joining him here is members of The Enid, Anglagard, Birds And Buildings, Agents Of Mercy and Mother 'n Son. In addition there is a string quintet and a brass quintet which are utilized to great effect. Compared to the debut the music here is more varied and confident sounding.

According to the liner notes this album is a "comment on contemporary society" and for whatever reason begins with Chapter IV (the album is divided into chapters but there are nine actual tracks). Called "Ruins" this opener is a moody symphonic piece with whispered vocals which turn into half-spoken/half-sung vocals. "Remember, Fear's a Relic" is some funky prog with some nice organ. Falsetto vocals are used for the lyrics where a female is talking. "Who Can It Be?" opens with majestic brass. It goes into a part with vocals and guitar (along with brass) sounding like a mix of prog folk and chamber rock.

The vocal part comes back with drumming and backup vocals. Later a very symph prog sounding part followed by more of a heavier rocking and synth-heavy section. A highlight for sure. "The Origin Of Blame" is another highlight. This song reminds me of both Supertramp and 10cc. Very upbeat and poppy for the most part. Almost an old school R&B vibe to this track. "Prey's Prayer" is an instrumental that sounds like a cross between Floyd and Camel. "Sunlight" opens with what sounds like tremoloed and Leslied electric guitar before going into an acoustic ballad.

Halfway drums arrive and everything turns more jazzy. The earlier ballad part is reprised with drums now. "The Relic" starts out as another acoustic ballad with more melodic vocals and some synth backing. A riff on electric guitar appears and piano mimics it. Then strings soar over top. The music comes to a stop and the ballad part is reprised, but now it's instrumental and the strings build towards a crescendo. The title track is possibly the standout piece. The best comes at the end of this album.

Starting out as some kind of mix of industrial and fusion with some spacey synths for good measure. Love that synth bass. Then it turns into symphonic techno rock. Then a straight symphonic piece with acoustic guitar (and that all is just within first 4 minutes!) After that we get some moody orchestral jazz. This is followed by some slow paced symph prog. Ends with vocals and lyrics similar to Chapter IV at the beginning. Overall this is a better written, better performed and better sounding album than The Fall Of Bliss. It's one of those albums where you're not sure what to make of it when you first listen to it, but repeated listenings are rewarding. 4 stars.

Thanks to windhawk for the artist addition. and to Quinino (w/ TenYearsAfter) for the last updates

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