Words: Craig Hartranft
One of the finest progressive rock band in North America, Mystery from Canada, returns with a new album, Delusional Rain. And as you might suspect, with the vocal spot being much like a revolving door, the band has a new lead singer with Jean Pageau.
Of course, the first question you may have, also considering Mystery's history, is, Does he sound like Jon Anderson. Band leader Michel St-Pere seems to have some predisposition to the Yes vocal sound. The answer would be, Not so much. Maybe a little of that timbre. But what Pageau does have is a gentle melodic, nearly unobtrusive, style that fits the Mystery sound.
And the Mystery sound, their melodic progressive rock, has always taken that approach as well: gentle, atmospheric and lush, yet with St-Pere's soaring guitar lines leading the way. It's not that their songs can't be bold, even heavy at times. There's some strong riffs at the core of The Last Glass Of Wine, for instance. Later, Wall Street King has a heavy and determined sound, nearly plodding and foreboding as it advance. But mostly, the rest of the songs light as the melody tied to the vocal harmonies sweeps you along like a cool wind on quiet summer afternoon. Of course, in the midst of all this is St-Pere's skillful fret interpretations. He has both range and smoothness that will remind some of some blend of Hackett and Gilmour. A final mention should be made of two things, maybe three. One of the first things I noticed at the start was fine drum presence and skills of Jean-Sebastien Goyette, which carries throughout the album. Another pleasing element is the production, which is profoundly clear and crisp, notably drawing out the bass line in every song. In the end, Delusional Rain is another fine Mystery album, engaging and entertaining melodic progressive rock. Should I have expected something different. Nope.
In the end, Delusional Rain is another fine Mystery album, engaging and entertaining melodic progressive rock. Should I have expected something different. Nope.
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