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Lunatic Soul - Walking On A Flashlight Beam CD (album) cover

WALKING ON A FLASHLIGHT BEAM

Lunatic Soul

 

Crossover Prog

3.96 | 330 ratings

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Prog Leviathan
Prog Reviewer
3 stars It's hard to dispute the winning streak that Mariusz Duda has helped accomplish with Riverside, a band which has become sort of a big deal around here. That makes picking up this album from Duda's side project pretty much a no- brainer, especially for fans of Riverside. Walking on a Flashlight Beam fits right in to Riverside's style, at least tonally. It's dark, mysterious, emotional, full of self-loathing lyrics... all the fun stuff we've come to expect from Riverside, but here Duda keeps the vibes slinky, torpid, and threatening. The intensity is scaled back, taking out almost all of the heavy chugging and hard guitar work Riverside fans may expect. Instead, Duda focuses on a slow-burn of electronic keyboard effects, acoustic guitar work, and general sense of mania that rises and falls like ocean swells.

It's classy and sophisticated and highly nuanced, and also immensely bleak. The songs feel thoughtfully crafted with dense layers of keyboard and laid-back rock instrumentation, but you'll probably have a difficult time walking away with anything tangible to remember. Walking on a Flashlight Beam is an album of tones and expression. I can't really knock anything about its production, or in Duda's talent, but listeners who aren't already deep in to Riverside vibe may be left behind; there just isn't enough being brought to the table here, and Duda plays it safe more often than not.

Perhaps its not coincidental then that this album is best when it deviates from the Riverside formula, favoring the ambient and electronic over the Porcupine Tree/Riverside formula of light/heavy/light-repeat. Check this out if you can't get enough Riverside, or are in the mood for some quite good dark ambiance to groove to, but not if you're hoping to find the next essential modern art-rock masterstroke. Recommended with a few caveats.

Songwriting: 3 - Instrumental Performances: 3 - Lyrics/Vocals: 2 - Style/Emotion/Replay: 3

Prog Leviathan | 3/5 |

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