A mind blowing review from Baby Butter
With a glorious opening opus, your heart and soul is instantly lifted to the promise of an extraordinary journey. This short instrumental is called.” Prismatic opening”, and it slips quickly into the next song called, “The Journey Begins”. It is as if the Grand Wazoo appears and shows himself and bends over and whispers in your ear an assurance of an unabashed ride of such an emotion level, that your heart will reemerge with a new found faith and confidence. This is a large pledge from 2 musicians who go out on the limb and give everything they got. Corey Lennox and Jeffrey Matthews have formed Surreal have an uncanny way of mixing progressive rock, with commercial pop sensibility and the right hooks to keep you wondrously engaged the entire time.
Take the next song on this impeccable record, “Muzzle”. It hits you hard, right in the chest and pounds it out like a caged animal. Its message is simple and powerful about not being silenced and they do it with just the right amount of defiance where you want to scream as loudly as they do. Right after that cage match, they bring you into a place where you can feel a cloud come down a warmly carry you away on a clear and delightful day. “Summer Haze”, is a perfect hug after your battle from the last song.
That is what I love about the arrangements on this album. Not only do they take you away on this spiritual journey of emotions, they do it in a way where you get to tap into your stories and intertwine them with your experience whether they are real or still just dreams. Just take, “Perfect for a moment”. This song can wrap up a lot of what they are trying to accomplish. It is a very aware song about receiving universal moments and knowing they are fleeting, but it those moments, you will carry the awareness for the rest of your life. Surreal’s message are very positive, uplifting and have intent and purpose.
I think you will understand that they may be compared to Dream Theater because of Corey’s vocals and other bands like Muse or even Spock’s Beard, but I am willing to take this thought in a slightly different direction. This is a very general way of saying this but I think a larger audience may agree with this comparison. Supertramp represented to me a band that made every note they ever recorded was accounted for. No notes were out of place, and Surreal has done just that on this record. I cannot find a note out of place, hence the reason I used the word Intent earlier. They have very strong intentions with the message they want to share with us.
“The Great Divide”, is a mountainous piece with a level of inner expansion that really tries to break through resistance. Spindrift is one of the most open and honest songs about surrender that I have heard in many years. The emotional maturity it takes to pull of these songs comes from a place of clarity and receptivity. If you are a Dream Theater fan, check out, “Suffocating”. It has that James LaBrie desperation and will haunt you as you look for a way out. “Falling through time” spotlight a guest vocalist named, “Anna Lennox. She adds a beautiful twist of innocence to this epic journey of the heart. Her added vocals are like a wonderful dessert right after a most fulfilling meal. This is the sweet cherry on top.
As Surreal fishes off the CD with, “Spectrum Finale”, it brings me back to the way Genesis did their albums and ties everything together with a perfect bow. I will admit this has been the CD that is on heavy rotation in my coup these days.
I think this is the way to start of this new year, go to their website and get your copy of this CD today!