Release Date: November 13, 2015
Reviewed by: Todd "Toddstar" Jolicoeur
For the most part, I will skip progressive rock. There are a few bands that will always get a listen - Flying Colors happens to be a favorite. From here on out, I will at least check them all out, because the debut release from Shumaun really has some great rock moments, regardless of the subgenre. Disc opener "A New Revolution" swirls and sweeps with a huge keyboard sound that morphs into a groove that supports big vocals and introduces some cool time changes at the bridge and chorus. "Miracles Of Yesterday" comes at you with great guitar riffs and ethereal vocals from Farhad Hossain, as well as a heavy bottom end anchored by killer drums that carry the track from verse to chorus and back again. "Keep It Together" is a keyboard-led song that has a fun rock-vibe attached to it. The vocals kick in, and while the tempo drops, the energy of the track seems to grow as the chorus kicks in. "When It's Our Turn" is another song that leans further into beautiful mellow rocker and less into progressive rock. The piano/keyboard that duets with the vocals through the first verse set the pace for the rest of the track, even after the rhythm section and guitars join the fray. In addition to Hossain, Tyler Kim adds touches of guitar throughout the disc. "Ambrosia" starts up like many a progressive track, but shifts gears and becomes a moody rocker at the first hint of vocals. The chorus pulls influence from modern radio rock. "Sunrise At Midnight" Jose Mora's bass and the guitars to lead the charge and anchor the lofty tune, while the drives keep the tempo moving, seemingly zig-zagging through the musical atmosphere.
"You And I Will Change The World" opens like a beautiful guitar-driven track that soon takes on a modern rock edge with a great sound from the rhythm section and vocals that fit the mood and drive of the track. "We Always Disappear" has a different feel and sound than some of the other tracks, with a guitar opening that has an eerie punch to it. As the song clicks along, the prog feel expands and takes over the song, especially at the bridge and chorus. "The Drop" shifts between different textures and depths presented on the disc thus far, but keeps the prog quotient high in the mix. The chugging guitars and different drum/percussion sounds drive the track, while the vocals soar above the track and deliver a catchy chorus. In addition to Wagar Khan, drums and percussion on the disc were handled by Travis Orbin and Mark Zonder. "Floods" comes out of left field and has a different feel than most of the tracks on the disc, including a chopped tempo that creates a disjointed feel between verse and chorus. "The Dream Of The Sleeper" is a very long track, clocking in at over 13 minutes. The different sounds and moods captured during the track range from a tribal groove to a driven prog rock vibe. A catchy chorus and vocals that breathe life into the lyrics keep the song from getting repetitive and overplayed. "Numbers" closes the disc with an ethereal rocker that pulls various sounds together to create a perfect bookend for the collection. The laid back feel of the song, combined with the Gabriel-esque vocals keep you engaged and interested in what may come next.
Tracklisting: A New Revolution - Miracles Of Yesterday - You And I Will Change The World - Keep It Together - We Always Disappear - When It's Our Turn - The Drop - Ambrosia - Floods - Sunrise At Midnight - The Dream Of The Sleeper - Numbers