Album Reviews

Cydemind – Erosion

Whether you are genuinely looking for new music or merely procrastinating at the office, and by all odds you’ve found yourself reading this, that’s not important. You’ve just got to stop right here, right now, and check this out, because I may just have found the best news in progressive metal this year. I listened to Erosion, by Cydemind, for the first time about a week ago, but I could already easily place them in my top 10 prog bands. They do an epic kind of prog metal with one singularity. They actually have a violin instead of vocals.

Cydemind is a Canadian band founded in 2011 by violinist Olivier Allard, keyboardist Camille Delage, guitarist Kevin Paquet, bassist Nico Damoulianos and drummer Alexandre Dagenais. The band stands out on today’s scene with a nontraditional touch on their unique kind of progressive metal: A classically trained violinist leading all their compositions.

Now, I’ve always liked some violin in my metal, and it is a recurrent instrument in a myriad symphonic; neoclassical, and/or progressive bands. But I don’t think I have ever been exposed to actual metal or rock songs in which the violin has the actual lead role. Even when I read their promo description for the first time I was a bit skeptical as for if this would really work out well. After one song into the album, I found myself pleasantly surprised. I’m afraid that, even if I tried, I would miserably fail to express the way a violin sound, THIS violin’s in particular, can positively outperform actual lyrics on its interpretation and raw passionate melodies. Olivier’s technique is almost touchable and it hits the notes in such an emotive and dramatic way, that it truly says all he wants to express without the need of words. Right from the start, musicianship and synchrony between band members are also palpable.

Erosion is formed by 6 tracks (Including a 27 minutes title track), containing epic sharp guitar riffs, sweet and beautiful piano melodies, psychedelic synths, diverse moods and paces, and on the spotlight a violin that is supreme and intense and raw and totally blessed by each and every of the gods of metal and classical music (Which I do believe are the same ones)
To conclude; this album may not be easy to digest for everyone, as its accessibility is not up there with its pure awesomeness, but it is an auditory delicatessen, highly recommended to prog snobs (oops!), I mean, prog metal fans, whom we know are always craving for novelties, experimental stuff and lengthy tracks. Each member’s masterful technique, the creativity and passion pouring all over their music and a variety of influences (from Rush to Dream Theater), make of Cydemind’s first full-length album an incredibly promising first step into what I estimate will be a tremendous music career.

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