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Delusion Squared

Delusion Squared

Review by Gary Hill

This is an interesting album. It’s got a very retro progressive rock sound to it, yet it feels fresh and modern. It has moments where it moves towards metallic prog, but they aren’t frequent or blatant. In addition, the female vocals lend an interesting touch, but, unlike most female fronted prog bands, this doesn’t feel like Renaissance. All in all, it’s quite a cool disc from a band that’s unique and intriguing.

Track by Track Review
The Very Day

There’s a cool effects sound that rises up to start this. Then acoustic guitar comes in and builds in intensity.  The vocals join and this seems like a proggier version of Heart to me. They take us through some intriguing musical explorations as they continue.

In My Time of Dying
No, this is not a cover of the Led Zeppelin song. This is a mellower cut that is quite pretty – at least for the earlier sections. It’s got a dramatic progressive rock ballad sound. I can hear hints of Genesis and Renaissance, but also a little Pink Floyd. They really make this one intense. It’s a real prog rock powerhouse. I love the section later that has jazzy chordings in the foreground with a spoken monologue in the background. They turn this to a crunchy neo-prog jam later.
Copyrighted Genes
The first two and a half minutes of this is in the form of a dramatic and melodic progressive rock instrumental. It powers out towards crunch towards the end. The vocals come in over this metallic prog arrangement. There’s a powerhouse musical climax that essentially segues this into the next piece.
The Betrayal
Rising up with an almost techno element to it, this is stripped down, but tasty. They take us through a number of twists and turns later as the arrangement gets powered up. There are some metallic moments including some crunch guitar and even some death vocals in the backdrop. It resolves out to more pure progressive rock for more singing.
Sentenced
This is a real powerhouse. Progressive rock with lots of metal creates a killer jam. At times this feels a bit like Rush, but only at times and only a little. It’s a cool tune, but the overall musical ideas aren’t that far removed from the rest of the album.
By the Lake (Mourning)
Those who are progressive rock purists would be best to come to this track and its counterpart first. This one grows gradually in a pretty prog rock ballad approach. Genesis would be a good comparison, but not the only one. This movement is quite pretty and very intricate. It builds in intensity, but never rises up past the point of being a melodic progressive rock ballad-type piece. Just as it seems ready to it transitions into the next movement.
By the Lake (Seeding)
This builds on the general musical concepts of the last tune, but has vocals. It gets more intense and yet drops to very mellow music at times. It’s a pretty tune that at times makes me think a little of Pink Floyd, but at other points of other acts. It gets very intense near the end.
Rebirth
They start this one with a music box and then a child’s giggle. As the music powers in it makes me think more of the proggy side of Queensryche. It drops back for a dramatic ascending progression that is classical in nature but makes me think of Zeppelin’s “Kashmir” musically. They work through some changes from there and this is rather like Dream Theater and other modern metallic prog outfits in a lot of ways. This cut is one of the most diverse on show and they take it through a number of twists and turns as they continue.
What We Will Be
Ambient tones are accompanied by a spoken bit from Stephen Hawking. It builds in a space rock kind of way. We’re almost half way through the song before it works to the balladic movement of piano and vocals. They continue by building on this piano and voice basis and it gets a little jazzy at times. Later, as this continues to build upward, there’s a killer melodic, but crunchy guitar solo that makes me think a bit of David Gilmour.
The Departure
This seems to come out of the previous piece. It’s based on a piano approach and is quite pretty. This really does feel like an extension of the track that came before, but it never reaches to the same heights, although it maintains a lot of the same musical aspects.
A Creation Myth
A melodic progressive rock tune, this starts with an acoustic guitar based ballad mode and grows from there. It gets a lot more developed and potent as it continues. It’s an intricate and powerful song that serves as a great way to close things in style.
 
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