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Pure Reason Revolution - The Dark Third CD (album) cover

THE DARK THIRD

Pure Reason Revolution

 

Crossover Prog

3.74 | 251 ratings

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Fight Club
Prog Reviewer
4 stars Pure Reason Revolution is a group I have been hearing about constantly for the last year or so. They seem to have been getting a great deal of acclaim from Porcupine Tree fans everywhere. For some reason I never bothered to give them a shot though until recently I thought "isn't it about time?" I started the first track in iTunes through hoping all the talk would be justified (also considering my brand new awesome Creative Soundblaster sound card!) I have to say I was immediately impressed! The sound these guys managed to forge felt like a breath of fresh air and I was not disappointed.

The style of this music left an immediate impression me. Creative, atmospheric, epic, and beautiful, it was everything I hoped it would be. I see clearly now why so many Porcupine Tree fans fell in love with this band, as there is clearly a strong resemblance. Pure Reason Revolution draws a great deal of influence from Porcupine Tree and Pink Floyd, but I wouldn't say they're a ripoff band. They hold all the rich textures and harmonies, but blend it with something different. Maybe more of an alternative rock approach? I can't really tell, but it's definately unique.

One of the things I think seperates Pure Reason Revolution from other groups such as PT and PF, are their vocal harmonies. I can never quite tell who the lead singer is as everyone is always working together. There are often 3 vocalists (one female) harmonizing together, or at times switching off. I can't say it's nearly as complex as Gentle Giant's approach to vocals, but it's still a great sound in the modern/alternative prog world. The only problem with this is it is sometimes hard to tell what they are singing about. In my opinion it's never good for a band to sing without making sure they are understood.

Now, there is plenty of positive on this album. Wonderful orchestration and powerful crescendos everywhere you could possibly need one. It sort of feels like a combination of Porcupine Tree and Explosions in the Sky to me. Take the atmospheres and songwriting of PT and give it an extra flavor of EITS's guitar harmonies and intense, dramatic, ear blowing riffs. The production is about as good as anyone could hope for in this digital age. There's plenty of rocking, headbanging moments, haunting atmospheres, and psychedelic passages - indeed a lot to keep me entertained.

So what's negative?

Honestly even though all the songs connect together like they are the same piece the album doesn't feel very cohesive. The first half the album (like the song Aeropause) is very relaxed and spacey. It moves very fluently and makes me feel like I'm sleeping in some nice waves, which is of course a good thing, but on the other hand the second half of the album is the complete opposite. It moves from this calm passive to state to chaotic and climactic progressive metal. This would work a lot better in my opinion if they balanced it more. Include some of the heavy sections in the beginning of the CD and more ambient pieces in the end. If they did this, I don't think the album would feel nearly as exausting as it does by its finish.

Even though the album has a balance problem, it is by no means a dissapointment. There is so much to enjoy here that I can't say this album deserves anything lower than a solid 8/10. The musicianship is just as good as anything PT has had to offer and the song structures are excellently conceived. All in all I have to say this is one of my favorite releases of 2006. The opinion of the PT fans is in fact justified. Definately recommended.

My rating: 8.5/10

Fight Club | 4/5 |

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