Magentic - 'In The Dream' Hot

Added by Central Electronic Brain     May 31, 2013    
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This album was originally released in 2010, but only became available worldwide in March 2012 through the usual internet outlets: although a promotional copy has only just found its way to Fireworks and Rocktopia for review. 

Magentic formed in Israel in 2003 as a standard tribute band, but then began crafting their own progressively orientated material with diverse influences and in 2006 began work on their debut album. Four years in the making, concept album ‘In The Dream’ is a 23-song set spread over two discs. When I saw they were a progressive band with shared male and female lead vocals I was eagerly anticipating something along the likes of Mostly Autumn. Sadly not!

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Several styles such as Rock, Punk, Funk, Grunge and Classical are all incorporated into the Magentic sound, which creates a variety of moods, but also gives the music an overall cluttered and disjointed feel. Throwing in some occasional off-kilter vocals and lyrics that range from odd to weird to often downright bizarre doesn’t bode well for an enjoyable listening experience – and I couldn’t even begin to explain the storyline running through the album; but with song-titles like ‘Slap The Monkey To Sleep’ and ‘Raging Hormones And Surging Endorphins’ it’s probably best not to try. I know it wouldn’t be progressive music without pushing some boundaries, but there are just too many extreme diversities within the music for it to work as a whole. Certain parts of the music are entertaining enough, but then they’re counteracted by parts that are just plain irritating, and come across as too damn smug for their own good.

Disappointing is the only way I can summarise an album that on the face of it seemed to have plenty of potential.

Ant Heeks

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Franco Cerchiari said:

Yeah, Magentic. I tried, I really tried to get into this. There are occasions I enjoy reflective, world music. In my opinion Ion's Immaculada (a side project of metal master Duncan Patersen of Anathema and Anti-Matter,) is a glorious, beautiful collection of music that is both soft and reflective. Difference is, on Ion's releases, the feel of the opening track continues throughout the CD's entire playing time drawing the listener into what it is the songwriter is trying to convey. Here, I got lost, with so many styles, vibes and tempos.

A concept album that "....tells a story about love and alternate realities in a world where there's nothing money can't buy," In the Dream opens with "Some Day," where the female and male voices of Dorin Mandelbaum and Boaz Peleg do a sort of accapella warble of vocal pitches and volumes. Tough to sit through at first, but within a few moments a soft piano comes into view, and then the song becomes quite beautiful - gentle, relaxing and easy on the ears. But then track 2 comes along, "Morning, Part 1," and I just had to take off the headphones. Jarring, with it's arpeggio beats and a give and take between different guitar riffs, the vocals were presented into a spoken, quicken pace type, that becomes more than one can listen to. Track 4, "Human, Part 2," didn't fare much better, as it sounded like all the instruments were in a footrace all trying to get to the finishing line first. I gave up quickly. Track 9, "How Nice..." featured classical guitar that played along nicely with a soft bass guitar adding a great underscore.

"My Precious," "In The Dream," the Beatles-esque "What's Real," (with what sounded like an accompaniment of cellos,) were strong and the closing track, the short 1:49 minute "Some Day We Will Fall In Love," was touching with some heartfelt lyrics, (....some day our hands will join, and holding hands will make our fears subside, our warmth flowing back and forth, from my hands to yours and from yours to mine. You fill the places fear likes to find.....all we have to do is some day fall in love..." This truly was a beautiful track, that I did listen to several times.

Comparing themselves to King Crimson, and Pink Floyd may be a bit of a stretch. I could hear influences of Kayak and early Genesis in their songs, but this was tough to listen to in one take. Way to much going on, way to many styles to throw at a listener at once and the end result is the CD doesn't play out nicely. It quickly becomes convoluted. Dorin Mandelbaum - vocals, flute, Boaz Peleg - vocals, guitar, Uri Katvan - guitar, Erez Aminpour - bass, vocals, all very talented indeed but this was just way to much of everything.

(note - I did not have a hard copy of this CD, but instead I heard it from a CD purchasing website -, where I paid for each individual track.)

September 21, 2013
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