ProgressoR / Uzbekistan Progressive Rock Pages


DarWin - 2018 - "Origin of Species"

(84:32; DarWin)


Now, I only have a digital download, so you need to bear with me a little on this. According to the research I have undertaken, this concept double album comes with a graphic (comic) layout which also tells the story. Itís roughly ten years from now into the future, 2028. An exhausted ecology, and global conflicts, have led to a huge upheaval of the world order, straining and diminishing human populations. The lives of everyday people and families have been turned upside down by the intense ecological pressures related to climate change. No longer just a theory discussed by scientists and politicians, climate change is wreaking havoc on the world. Chaos and confusion reign as fighting for basic resources continuously escalates. ďDay ZeroĒ has occurred, when nuclear attacks punctuated what had for many years been a civility between nations and people. As Earth rejects life, those of us who remain struggle to survive. It depicts the role of a changing planet, and the potential, as well as limitations, of technology to help solve mankindís greatest challenges. DarWin himself provided the songs and some guitars, and from what I can ascertain is based in Iceland. This project started when he contacted famed drummer and producer Simon Phillips to undertake some recording, and then over time they brought in bass player and singer Matt Bissonette and there are also performances from the likes of Jeff Babko (keyboards and quartet arrangements), Greg Howe (blazing lead guitar solos), Dennis Hamm (keyboards), Ernst Tibbs (bass), Katisse Buckingham (Flute, Soprano Sax), Samuel Sim and Peter Nickalls (orchestral and quartet arrangements), The Origin of Species Quartet (Los Angeles), The Reykjavik String Quartet (Iceland), and The Chamber Orchestra Of London (Conductor Matt Dunkley). It is an ambitious project, and the website is also massively over the top and worth investigating to get some idea of scale. But, first and foremost this may have an incredibly important story to tell (even there seem to be some important politicians in the world who forego scientific evidence and feel there is no such thing as climate change), but musically this is one hell of an album. Progressive, melodic, rock, this takes all of these elements and wraps them into the story so people will be singing this without realising just how important this is. It feels fresh, it feels inviting, and with Phillips at the back it is always being driven in the right direction. This is another album which invites the listener deep inside, deep into the thought processes of DarWin, moving from frantic riff and hook-driven rock into melodic and orchestral with nary a pause for breath. It is exciting, invigorating (and long, very long), yet the listener feels refreshed by playing this. This isnít an album to be dipped in and out of, nor something for the background, as it refuses to stay there but always moves forward and demands close attention. It is to be savoured, enjoyed, discovered, loved. I may not have seen the full package, but the music has grabbed me since I first heard it, and overall this must be some release. Highly recommended.

Progtector: August 2019

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