Tuesday, October 4, 2011

Riverside EP "Memories in My Head" Continues Their Original Prog Stance

With modern prog rock there are a few elements you expect on any representative disk. Well developed vocals, poetic impressionistic lyrics, long song structures, synth-org & guitar-bass-drums all in synch with elaborate arrangements and some pithy soloing (more of the latter and less vocals and you start entering into fusion territory). Of course that's just a template. WHAT a group does with that matters much.

Riverside is a group that puts all of those elements together. Their 10th anniversary EP Memories in My Head (Laser's Edge) shows that they manage to go well beyond the rote aspect of prog practice to create music today that is original, spacey and musically rich in the manner of the best historic bands. That they do not sound like those bands is why they are very good; that after 10 years of hitting it they are confidently themselves makes them more than that.

This is terrifically moody, long-form prog. All elements are there and the production sparkles as it sprawls into familiar yet somehow strangely rearranged soundscapes.

Thirty-minutes. Three long pieces. One happy listener.

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