Rating:
9.0
Riverside - Out Of Myself
15 December 2003


01. The Same River
02. Out Of Myself
03. I Believe
04. Reality Dream
05. Loose Heart
06. Reality Dream II
07. In Two Minds
08. The Curtain Falls
09. OK


It took at least three spins of this album for me to really start wondering who the hell Riverside was and how come I hadn't heard of them before. From then on I started discovering this album in every sense, it grew on me so much that it has become one of the most treasured pieces in my collection.

In a way, Riverside's formula for a great musical experience lies in the "simple" approach -- strong bass lines by Mariusz Duda, supporting drum section by Piotr Kozieradzki to form the backbone, Piotr Grudzinski on guitar to create the lead melodies, and back at the recording time Jacek Melnicki on keyboard to take care of the aerial atmosphere. Add great singing by Duda and some creativity and influences by Anathema, Pink Floyd, Opeth and Porcupine Tree. Stir, shake and serve.

The result is a highly emotional album focusing not only musically but also conceptually on emotions, feelings and the struggle in life and endless failure. And all wrapped up in artwork by Travis Smith. The album starts off with a 12 minute track "The Same River." Typical prog metal you say? Naah... Half of the song is an instrumental intro to the album which sets the listener in the proper frame of mind. Starting with haunting atmosphere the song slowly gains speed, might and versatility on the stairs of the underlying bass, layered with guitar melodies that shine with compositional skill. Mid-song hits an abrupt pause and almost starts anew with bass that just makes an imprint in your memory. And thus starts a story that tries to tell about a man facing depression and failures and trying to struggle through it again by entering "the same river."

The second track "Out Of Myself" is where the aforementioned reference to Pink Floyd first springs up. Took me a while to actually find why the beginning guitars sounded so familiar. Reminded me very much of "Let There Be More Light," the opening track from Pink Floyd's "A Saucerful Of Secrets" album. Not exactly the same but the theme is very similar in the beginning. The track feeds on emotions and grows into a rather angry piece and I love when Duda can almost be heard screaming "Let me get this straight / Let me get this right" towards the end of the track.

"I Believe" is a moment of calm, a stop to take a breath to go onto an instrumental journey that is "Reality Dream," a journey where you find beauty, calmness and aggressive speed, stubbornness and the will to fight. It has interesting interplay between guitars and keys, heavy riffing and it builds up some sense of panic, the one that you can feel after waking up from a nightmare. This is the first of the two instrumental flights, challenging pieces that just get remembered for great lines and turns. It is followed by "Loose Heart" which captures Anathema-like atmosphere of loss, with a bit of Opeth coming in when Duda almost growls the lines "Raise me up / Don't let me fall!" The second part of instrumental, "Reality Dream II," is virtuously served next. It's interesting to note that the band has used instrumental tracks to build up momentum and vocal tracks to slow the pace down.

"In Two Minds" is more like a ballad, a slow track accompanied by acoustic and electric guitars. Nothing really special but it suits well with the coming "The Curtain Falls." This track is another strong reference, guitar wise, to Pink Floyd. Some very Gilmoure-like use of guitars from the times of "Wish You Were Here" and especially "The Wall" albums, the track particularly retains similarity with the "Another Brick In The Wall, Pt. 1" in the background. Hauntingly familiar and yet it still sounds fresh. The album is closed with "Ok," a peculiar end to the album. It’s a track not really fitting the general style but a good end because of the message it carries. "There is sadness in my mind -- OK," a sadness because the world doesn't change... and because the album ends.

This album might not be one you are going to love from the first listen. In the first place it might not even be anything special. It's just that this piece of art is a bit more delicate and subtle and needs time to live into it. It took me a while till my feet were kicked from under me. In my case this album became dearer and dearer with each spin. And I'm really curious if these guys from Poland can prove with their new album that this gem did not come out accidentally.


Dedicated to janhuss who made me discover this band. Thanks, mate!!


Band profile: Riverside
Album: Out Of Myself


 



Written on 13.09.2005 by
Ivor
I shoot people.

Sometimes, I also write about it.
More reviews by Ivor ››



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JohnDoe - 23.10.2006 at 23:37  
Out of Myself is a brilliant album. if you, the metal fan or the prog-metal fan don't own this, you'd better make the effort of purchasing this album and also Riverside's second album entitled Second Life Syndrome which proved that the debut album was NO accident. An amazing band honestly, very good musicians not to mention the great vocals.
BloodTears - 23.12.2006 at 14:56  
I read an interview with Riverside on a portuguese magazine and minutes later that I was listening to "Out Of Myself", i immediately fell in love with the sound and the concept of the album. Ever since, Riverside have been in the top of my list. It seems extraordinary that a band has a first cd like that. Ans I agree with marillionfan when he says that SLS (2nd cd) proved their talent. Very good album indeed. A must have.
Mizer - 09.11.2007 at 15:50  
Great album! ...So much emotion in it. Damn I love "The Curtain Falls" - it was a song alone worth purchasing the album. Extra plusses for the artwork in album covers.
BloodTears - 09.11.2007 at 20:41  
Yes, the artwork is really interesting, especially if you think about it while you're listening to the songs.
Dr Ikari - 25.11.2008 at 17:27  
Well, I don't know if it's just me but I actually find IN TWO MINDS quite beautiful...lirically and musically speaking...and the rest of the album? Awesome. There are definitely some Anathema and somewhat Tool influences back there, and Mariusz' voice sometimes sounds like Akerfeldt. Great band. I'm still into them.
BloodTears - 07.07.2009 at 21:32  
Written by Guest on 05.07.2009 at 21:31

I'm starting to discover Riverside now, and it's partly because of my coleague BloodTears, who told me about them I'm becoming a fan (hey BloodTears i bet the magazine where you read that interview was Loud, wasn't it? Hehehe )


lol What review? I'm glad you like them. There's a lot to explore. I actually wrote a review for their album Rapid Eye Movement for Metalstorm. Maybe that's what you're talking about. As it turns out, a lot of people disliked Rapid Eye Movement.
BloodTears - 08.07.2009 at 18:37  
Written by Guest on 08.07.2009 at 00:21

Written by BloodTears on 07.07.2009 at 21:32

Written by Guest on 05.07.2009 at 21:31

I'm starting to discover Riverside now, and it's partly because of my coleague BloodTears, who told me about them I'm becoming a fan (hey BloodTears i bet the magazine where you read that interview was Loud, wasn't it? Hehehe )


lol What review? I'm glad you like them. There's a lot to explore. I actually wrote a review for their album Rapid Eye Movement for Metalstorm. Maybe that's what you're talking about. As it turns out, a lot of people disliked Rapid Eye Movement.


You said here earlier the following: ("I read an interview with Riverside on a portuguese magazine and minutes later that I was listening to "Out Of Myself").

I wasn't talking of any Review.

I was refering to that Interview you read, girl lol you misread what i wrote But yes and starting to like them, it seems cool


lol I'm sorry I totally didn't understand what you were saying. I guess my brain stopped there. Yes, it was in Loud, more than a year ago. I read an interview, it was about their 2nd album Second Life Syndrome. The review praised the album and I decided to listen to it and I was hooked and have been ever since.

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