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Art of Illusion - Cold War Of Solipsism CD (album) cover

COLD WAR OF SOLIPSISM

Art of Illusion

Progressive Metal


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kev rowland
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR
Crossover Team
4 stars Art of Illusion are a Polish prog metal act who are new to me, but this is their second album, released at the beginning of 2018 (following up on 'Round Square of the Triangle" which was released in 2014). The quintet are Marcin Walczak (vocal, choirs), Filip Wiśniewski (guitars), Paweł Łapuć (keyboards, piano), Mateusz Wiśniewski (bass), Kamil Kluczyński (drums, choirs) and I am amazed that I have not previously come across either the band or any of the individuals as this is quite some album. There are some similarities with fellow Polish band Riverside, but I think what really makes this album for me are the changes in tempo and the twists and turns which allows them to bring in elements that are quite deliberately off-key, creating discord that then returns to harmony.

There is a high use of piano, which adds a different feel to the more keyboard oriented bands in the genre, while the bass is also used as a lead melody instrument at times which definitely adds to the complexity as Mateusz uses many different styles, not content with just providing a backbone. Kamil is also an incredibly complex drummer, certainly not settling into any particular style or form for very long, ensuring that there is a different feel being provided into different areas of songs. As for the guitar, Filip may shred, or be restrained, or riff, or bring in an acoustic and pick that if the mood is right, and then at the front is Marcin. Vocally this is all about control, in a more baritone style than many, and there is a deliberate contrast between what he is doing and what is happening underneath, so long drawn out notes from the vocals are underpinned by complex arpeggios being played at great speed on either guitar or piano.

This is an incredibly exciting and refreshing album, and ones that fans or prog rock that stray into metal territory at times, surely need to hear. Available on self-released CD, the band have also put it up on Bandcamp so give it a listen.

Report this review (#1942996)
Posted Tuesday, July 3, 2018 | Review Permalink
Rivertree
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR
PSIKE Team & Band Submissions
5 stars Dedicated to those fans who music-wise are on the heavier side of life predominantly. Yes, featuring metal guitar riffs en masse, though this is never annoying in any way. While also often enough alternating with regenerating art rock excursions. Thus you should prepare for an enchanting experience. Musicianship is flawless by all means, especially to notice the powerful and varied drummer Kamil Kluczynski, who also acts as the head of the related authorized record label. It took a long time, anyway, step by step I was capable of recognizing how they manage to bring complex arrangements, catchy melodies and diverse moods into harmony. Really fascinating!

So this is often enough drifting into mellow parts with acoustic guitars. The fantastic Allegoric Fake Entity for example opens with slicing guitar backed by a strong jazzy drive, later on showing some fancy piano moves. Provided with strong hit potential the charming Able To Abide provides an art rock orientation influenced by Steven Wilson. Marcin Walczak is a top rock singer! I would also call up Dream Theater, Riverside, Odd Logic, Abstrakt as close references. Culminating in the closing long track King Errant this is picking up and assembling all the advantages of the aforementioned acts with ease. Irresistible! Constantly accompanying me since one year nearly, now I'm finally going to declare that 'Cold War Of Solipsism' is nothing less than a masterpiece of progressive rock.

Report this review (#2077057)
Posted Monday, November 19, 2018 | Review Permalink

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