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Lunatic Soul - Lunatic Soul CD (album) cover


Lunatic Soul


Crossover Prog

4.03 | 375 ratings

From, the ultimate progressive rock music website

usa prog music
4 stars Lunatic Soul is a side project by Riverside bassist and vocalist Mariusz Duda, who handles most instruments himself on this production, as well as writing most of the music and lyrics. The self-titled debut album by this project was issued towards the tail end of 2008.

To do away with this one first: Fans of Duda's main band Riverside may not find this album too interesting. Some may enjoy this creation as well of course, as this is a matter of personal taste, but the musical output from Duda in this case is not very similar to the works of Riverside. Indeed, apart from the ballad "Adrift" there's few musical similarities at all. The moods and atmospheres are somewhat of the same nature though, even if the stylistic attributes are different there's a melancholy, dark and even despairing emotional touch to all the compositions on this production that I personally find in Riverside's albums, too.

The first 5 songs on this release are all of a similar-sounding nature, and form a sort of a first half on the album. Floating synth layers, acoustic guitars and percussion are the main instruments here as on the rest of this release; with melodic and at times driving bass lines as a foundation. And Duda's vocals convey emotions by the bucketful - as expected. On these first tunes a distinct stylistic leaning are used extensively though; folk-tinged percussions and rhythms run like a red thread through these compositions; eastern-tinged synths flavor the songs and even the string instruments contain a strong folk-tinged flavor in general and eastern tinge in particular. The songs themselves are dreamy in nature, with some majestic segments mainly created by synths; slow melodic searching guitar soloing and of course Duda's wonderful voice on the tracks that aren't instrumental.

After a few excursions into other musical realms the album ends with songs in this nature as well, which means that most of this production has that trademark sound to it. However; "Where The Darkness Is Deepest" is more of a grim, industrial-tinged exploration - aptly named as such when thinking about the mood explored there. "Near Life Experience" is more of a happy song, venturing closer to jazz territories in style. "Adrift" is a melancholy ballad more than anything else, while the outstanding song "The Final Truth" explores a basic song containing rhythms, organ and vocals only for most of its length, fleshed out with intense drums and symphonic synths of a majestic variety towards the end.

All in all this is a very solid debut by Mariusz Duda's side project Lunatic Soul. The compositions are high class, and a few of them are truly outstanding. Those who think that mixing progressive rock with ambient sounding moods to create dark, haunting yet dreamy and beautiful music sounds like a good thing should find this production compelling, and I'd hazard a guess for this CD to become a personal favorite for quite a few listeners.

usa prog music | 4/5 |


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