Earthside: A Dream In Static review

When Progressive newcomers Earthside sent out an electronic press kit with the song “The Closest I’ve Come” it immediately started to generate a buzz in the music industry and with a sound that falls somewhere between Opeth, Dream Theater and Devin Townsend it’s no wonder why. The band, based out of New Haven, CT has just self-released their debut album- A Dream In Static in conjunction with Fresno Media and if you’re a fan of Progressive music with a Symphonic Metal edge, then you simply must give A Dream In Static a listen. To be honest, labeling this remarkable band Progressive really does them an injustice as they are so much more than that and prefer to refer to themselves as a creative collective, playing what they call Cinematic Rock N Roll. The album was produced, recorded and mixed in Stockholm, Sweden under the watchful eye of David Castillo & Jens Bogren and if you try to imagine Lajon Witherspoon from Sevendust scoring a movie with the Trans-Siberian Orchestra, you’d have a pretty good idea where lead single and video “Mob Mentality” is coming from. Speaking of movies, “Entering the Light” has a bone chilling vibe to it that brought to mind The Exorcist and would serve as the perfect backdrop to any modern day horror film. While title track “A Dream in Static” and the second half of “Skyline” are bound to draw comparisons to Prog legends Porcupine Tree. Other highlights include the slightly TOOL-ish “Crater,” which contains guest vocals by Bjorn Strid of Soilwork and their epic masterpiece “Contemplation of the Beautiful,” that clocks in at a whopping 11:49 and sounds like a symphonic tribute to the Deftones. If any fault at all could be found on A Dream In Static, it would have to be that the songs with vocals are so damn good that they make the instrumentals, which are already stunning in their own right, somewhat pale in comparison. Here’s the bottom line. If Earthside ever decide to add a permanent lead vocalist with a strong enough voice to complement their complex compositions, they will be an unstoppable force to be reckoned with. Rating: 8.5 out of 10 -Eric Hunker