Meandering In Dreams
As the music fades in on Pure Reason Revolution’s debut album, The Dark Third, an epic presence arrives. Like an overture to an opera, “Aeropause” assures listeners that the journey will be mythic and complex as its guitars, pianos and strings spiral towards the heavens ever so serenely. The album then shifts gears from fragile and beautiful to hard and heavyâ€šÃ„Ã¬sometimes at several points in one track. What holds the album back is its seemingly habitual meandering between its strongest points. Throughout the album, lyrical allusions to the concept of dreaming and waking arise, from the blatant “I’m cold and I want to go to sleep” in “Apprentice Of The Universe,” to the artful Pink Floyd reference, “The million bright ambassadors of morning,” in “The Intention Craft.” Jon Courtney and bassist Chloe Alper deliver the lyrics in a choir-like fashion, adding an ethereal dimension to this concept.
Musically, Pure Reason Revolution is a first-rate band with an uncanny ability to use guitars to juxtapose quiet tranquility and epically heavy assaults, as in the way the aforementioned “Aeropause” segues into “Goshen’s Remain” with heavily layered guitars accompanied by more prevalent drums. Changes like this consistently and dazzlingly occur throughout The Dark Third, especially in the pair of ten-minutes-plus tracks, “He Tried to Show Them Magic” and “The Bright Ambassadors.” However, it’s the crucial moments that directly precede and follow these moments of sheer delight, where the piano and lead guitar will alternately dance on the same aural patterns for extended periods of time as if waiting for direction, that transform wonderment to disinterest.
The Dark Third encompasses spectacular playing and lyrics that combine for a beautiful effect. As a result, Pure Reason Revolution is a band to watch. However, said effect comes at a cost of epic songs with a stop-and-wait pace due to repeated meanderings between moments of bliss.