CD Reviews

Lucid Dream - 'Otherworldly'

Added by Central Electronic Brain     August 09, 2017    
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If you're a fan of Queensrÿche's 'Operation Mindcrime', then this enjoyable release could be for you.

First and foremost, I must point out that despite the categorization of this album being "Progressive", it will no doubt also be enjoyed by those who embrace Classic Rock, Metal, Melodic Rock, and even AOR; yes, it's an album that straddles many sub-genres and saying it's purely one thing would do it a disservice.

Lucid Dream originates from the Genoa region of Italy and is primarily a three-piece unit. Already I can imagine you comparing them to the undoubted Kings of three-piece Rock... Rush; and yes, there are elements of Geddy Lee/Alex Lifeson/Neil Peart throughout this opus. However, high expectation should by quelled somewhat as Simone Terigi (guitars, backing vocals), Alessio Calandriello (lead vocals) and Gianluca Eroico (bass) do not, yet, possess the "otherworldly" skills and intricacies of the aforementioned individuals. Conversely, this third LD album displays great promise and although I'm unfamiliar with its predecessors – 'Visions From Cosmos11' (2011) and 'The Eleventh Illusion' (2014) – my research suggests that this effort is their best to date.

'Otherworldly' is a concept album, however, not the type to become suffocated by a pretentious storyline that so often usurps the music on show. Suffice to say, the story is adapted from Terigi's own book 'The Zen Of Sound', documenting a "warrior-artist's" use of art to transform his own self-existence.

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Following a short, atmospheric intro, the album commences in earnest with 'Buried Treasure', built upon a classic early Iron Maiden riff and supported by a proficient rhythm section (the excellent drumming is courtesy of Paolo Tixi). A nice tempo change mid-song takes us into Black Sabbath (circa 1973) territory, before returning to its up-tempo default setting. 'The Ring Of Power' continues in similar fashion, with an impressive guitar break mid-song and led by non-accented vocals that give a nod to Lee. 'Everything Dies' (as the title intimates) slows things down a modicum and the Sabbath similarities are unmistakable. Rush influences are again evident on 'The Stonehunter', but 'Magnitudes' takes things to the next level; a great composition with varying tones and tempos. The melodic and emotional 'Broken Mirror' prepares the listener for the "piece-de-resistance" that is 'The Theater Of Silence' which encapsulates the band's blueprint; the inclusion of violins evoke fond associations with Kansas (more of this, please!).

If you're an admirer of any of the bands mentioned, or/and you're a fan of Queensrÿche's 'Operation Mindcrime', then this enjoyable release could be for you.

Dave Crompton

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