look forward to the beginning of a new year. This is when many of the debut
albums from young bands are released, as they like to avoid the last half of the
year when many of the big hitters release new stuff. So, for the first new band
I've heard in 2014, Synaesthesia is a great find. Young, energetic, and
influenced through several channels, Synaesthesia have put together a fine debut
album that I think will earn them some attention.
definitely has a sound of their own creation. They take influence from
alternative rock. some indie rock , and progressive music. Indeed, I almost hear
influence from Incubus, Frost*, Muse, and a few others. Their sound, then, is
instantly recognizable, yet as you try to separate the sounds, you will realize
that they don't really sound like any other band particularly. I feel that is a
genuine accomplishment, and kudos to the band for being so on point here.
all these influences, Synaesthesia's self-titled debut is a fairly eclectic mix
of electronic elements, sweeping and also deliberate synth, proggy guitars,
light drumming, and a foundation of bass. The musicians here are certainly
capable, though the music never gets overly technical. It's more about mood and
ambiance, I think. This is especially so with the keys, and there seems always
to be a background layer of keys or electronic sounds just to provide, well, a
background. Actually, one of the more impressive things on the album is the dual
nature of the instrument styles. For instance, the guitars easily switch from
proggy detail to alternative distortion. The keys, also, switch from atmospheric
to music-leading passages. No one instrument seems to be at the forefront, and
so it provides a great modern sound. Synaesthesia so desires to bring a modern
sound to progressive music, and I do feel that they have succeeded to a great
release isn't without flaws, though. At first, I had trouble with the vocalist,
Adam Warne. His voice isn't particularly spellbinding, but it does improve with
more listens. It definitely lies more in the alternative range. However, I
realized that the writing is my main problem with this album. The lyrics are
somewhat cheesy and forced sometimes, almost like the band just needed to fill a
certain amount of space with a single word. It definitely does not leave an
organic feeling on the vocal melodies, but I do believe it's passable. Now, the
lyrical content is quite good, as it seems to look at some ways our modern lives
are destroying us. This is something with which I can relate. However, I do feel
they could have communicated this message more effectively.
all, Synaesthesia has released a great album that should please many people.
Keyboard-driven music isn't all that common nowadays, and it's great to see a
band utilize this approach, but still keep a balance. More than that, the band
achieves balance while also writing some rather catchy songs that pay homage to
many different music types. "Time, Tension, & Intervention" with its 22+ minute
run time is a great representation of the whole album, and is probably my
favorite song on the album with its shifting of styles and its tighter writing.
Another stand out track is "Life's What You Make of It" with its great chorus
and electronic sound.
you like a great mixture of styles and exemplary keys, Synaesthesia may be your
new favorite. Everything about this album screams success to me, and not just in
the prog sphere, either. With a little bit of everything, Synaesthesia will
definitely be talked about quite a bit over the coming months.