RIVERSIDE – Shrine Of The New Generation Slaves (2013)

RIVERSIDE - Shrine Of The New Generation Slaves (2013) mp3 download


I have a soft spot for Polish Prog wonders RIVERSIDE, one of the most interesting acts in the genre from the new generation.

After four albums and a great EP last year, they have managed to reach a next splendid height in terms of dynamic songwriting with their newest, highly anticipated fifth studio album release “Shrine Of New Generation Slaves”.

“Shrine Of New Generation Slaves” (or “S.O.N.G.S.” for easier referencing) offers more than 50 minutes of high-class music which don’t just clearly reflect a further developed, modern take on the band’s charismatic trademark elements, but also effectively adds vibes of the Classic Rock segment as well as art-rock bits to the ever-challenging mix that Riverside has always stood for.

Maybe just less standard metallic and also less complex – without meaning less progressive – they surprise us with something fresh, a more mature chapter in the band’s career and focused again more on melody and organic rock groove than before.

The CD title might sound a bit intricate, but the acronym definitely explain what they did here: SONGS.

Conceptually, it is an album as intense and introspective as ever before but there is also a strong and very obscure social component to things this time around, with lyrics talking about the ‘new generation slavery’, where people seem to be unable to take control over their own lives.

Musically, while many of Riverside’s trademark style is here – progressive music with a heavy bass presence and a vocalist who has more in common with hard rockers than most of the prog scene – SONGS is instead a way more chill progressive rock album in the veins of Marillion or Steven Wilson‘s stuff.

One of the things that had impressed me in the band’s earlier material was the delicacy and the melodies of the calmer material, and the merge of the first two tracks here, from “New Generation Slave” to “The Depth of Self-Delusion” shows off the band’s melodic chops with the deft use of counter melody and melancholy.

This more delicate side of the band is what is on display throughout the whole album, peaking on the 8 minute second track and rolling downhill all the way to the last “Coda”. Older fans will be happy to hear that the organs and keyboards are back throughout the record.

“We Got Used to Us” is a piano driven ballad – even if it does have an excellent bassline that pushes the music forward, while in the charming “Deprived (Irretrievably Lost Imagination)” is where vocalist Mariusz Duda shines with an emotional performance. He handles this kind of sweet material with a fantastic touch.

One of the finest moments on the CD is the album’s major epic “Escalator Shrine”, a real treat of classic Prog driven by a fantastic guitar riff / Hammond B3 keyboard arrangement.

Riverside did it again. They managed to record another interesting album without repeating themselves, completely different in style to its predecessor.

This is a band who can write ’70s influenced Prog, while still maintaining cohesive and interesting songs that are fun to listen to and simultaneously intellectually stimulating.

“Shrine Of New Generation Slaves” shows that Riverside hasn’t lost a step talentwise while wandering into their fifth album, even if they have dialed back the heaviness a bit.


01 – New Generation Slave

02 – The Depth Of Self-Delusion

03 – Celebrity Touch

04 – We Got Used To Us

05 – Feel Like Falling

06 – Deprived (Irretrievably Lost Imagination)

07 – Escalator Shrine

08 – Coda

Mariusz Duda – vocals, bass

Piotr Grudzinski – guitars

Michal Lapaj – keyboards

Piotr Kozieradzki – drums

RIVERSIDE - Shrine Of The New Generation Slaves (2013) back cover



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