RIVERSIDE — Rapid Eye Movement

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RIVERSIDE - Rapid Eye Movement cover
3.66 | 48 ratings | 8 reviews
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Album · 2007

Filed under Metal Related
By RIVERSIDE

Tracklist

1. Beyond the Eyelids (7:56)
2. Rainbow Box (3:36)
3. 02 Panic Room (5:29)
4. Schizophrenic Prayer (4:20)
5. Parasomnia (8:10)
6. Through the Other Side (4:05)
7. Embryonic (4:10)
8. Cybernetic Pillow (4:45)
9. Ultimate Trip (13:13)

Total Time: 55:48

Bonus disc
1. Behind the Eyelids (6:18)
2. Lucid Dream IV (4:33)
3. 02 Panic Room (remix) (3:24)
4. Back to the River (6:29)
5. Rapid Eye Movement (12:39)

Total Time: 33:24

Line-up/Musicians

- Mariusz Duda / vocals, bass, acoustic guitar
- Piotr Grudzinski / guitars
- Michal Lapaj / keyboards
- Piotr Kozieradzki / drums

About this release

CD Inside Out / Mystic Production

Cover art by Travis Smith

Released in Poland as a digipack by Mystic Production, released in the rest of the world by Inside Out. Both have the same cover/layout.

Thanks to bartosso for the updates

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RIVERSIDE RAPID EYE MOVEMENT reviews

Specialists/collaborators reviews

The Crow
Compared to other Riverside albums Rapid Eye Movement is just average. But it's miles away over the average of prog-rock releases from the last decade!

Riverside tried to become a bit more accessible in this one, sacrificing their most progressive side in some tracks while maintaining their trademark of strong bass lines, atmospheric keyboards, detailed drumming, great riffs and solos, alongside with tortured lyrics. It was a bit shocking for the fans of the band back in 2007 and considered as a step back, but ten years after the release of the album we can appreciate the tremendous quality of the songs without prejudice and look at this record as the unique and especial step further in the career of the band that undoubtedly is.

Beyond the Eyelids, nevertheless, follows the path of Second Life Syndrome with an intricate and strong beginning, very progressive and even darker as their previous compositions. The chorus is great and so is the final atmospheric solo. Rainbow Box has a brutal initial bass which opens a song which talks about metal illness and the effects of its treatment. Intense, good and why not, with some Porcupine Tree influences.

02 Panic Room has some electronic basis in the vein of the EP Voices in my Head. The great chorus and the incredible final part polish one of the hits of the alum, with lyrics based on the splendid videogame Silent Hill 4: The Room. This two tracks are more direct, not so progressive and they brought a not very welcomed new style for Riverside. But I find both songs just awesome!

But for the fans of Second Life Syndrome, Schizophrenic Prayer brings the mood of this album back, with its insidious vocal melodies at the beginning. The rhythmic base is original and unique, and the ending of the song is a bit more conventional, but very good nevertheless. And also fantastic is Parasomnia, which contains the darkest lyrics of the album and one of the most progressive instrumental developments. I specially love the section after "Drugged from sleep?" Pure Riverside magic!

Through the Other side is a fine acoustic song in the vein of Us from Voices in My Head (this EP totally introduced the style of Rapid Eye Movements) which is a welcomed changed of intensity in the album. Sadly, Embryonic is another acoustic track but not so good this time, giving the impression that the album lost a bit direction at this point, despite the good guitar solo towards the end of the song.

Cybernetic Pillow tries to get the album back on track, but it's not as good as the first five song. The Tool-based riffs are just fine, and after the chorus we can hear a typical Riverside melody. Just Ok. But luckily Ultimate Trip saves the album from disaster, because is one of the best song included here, and also the most uplifting one. It has an outstanding instrumental work, even with some classic hard rock influences and another incredible final section, which contains the best guitars of the album and a very good bass line.

I had the luck to enjoy Riverside playing this song with my beloved wife in Madrid, back in 2011, and it was just unforgettable! Since then, I like Ultimate Trip even more.

Conclusion: Rapid Eye Movement is not perfect. It suffers from a clear drop after the just fine Through the Other Side because of two lackluster songs, and this gives the false impression that this album is worse than actually is, because it contains six other tracks which can easily be considered true Riverside classics. And taking in consideration the quality of this band that's just awesome.

In addition, the slight musical change to make some songs a bit more accessible was not very well welcomed by fans of the first two albums back in 2007. But after ten years I consider this album even more especial for that reason, despite the initial shock that we had the first time we heard it. And sincerely, it also contains some of the best and darkest lyrics of the band's history.

Best Tracks: the whole Fearless section plus Ultimate Trip.

My Rating: ****

This review has originally written for ProgArchives.com
Kingcrimsonprog
2007's Rapid Eye Movement was the third full-length studio album by the Polish Progressive band Riverside, and served as the story conclusion to their concept-trilogy "Reality Dream."

Musically, Riverside play a mixture of 1970s influenced Progressive Rock sounds, a little touch of Neo-prog and a lot of more modern Prog Metal sounds. If you've heard them before you can hear touches of things like Tool, Porcupine Tree, Opeth, Pain of Salvation etc as well as the obvious Pink Floyd influence, but crucially all delivered in a fresh and original way. There's a distinctive Riverside sound all of its own, that more evokes the spirit of those acts than sounds like a rip-off or a medley of covers.

In terms of quality, the band are absolutely top notch and a coming out with some of the most enjoyable music available right now. This album is a fantastic addition to anybody's collection. It's the kind of grower that you keep getting more and more out of on repeat listens and should more than satisfy anyone who's curious about the band.

Admittedly, stylistically a few people may be disappointed by the album, but equally many fans will be pleased. You see, the band experimented with adding a bit more of a Metal influence on their previous album "Second Life Syndrome" and "Rapid Eye Movement" takes that idea even further, which may scare off some of the fans who absolutely hate all things Metal, but equally will please fans with a more Metal background.

As well as incorporating Metal, the band try their hand at a few shorter and more succinct songs, such as `O2 Panic Room,' `Rainbow Box' and `Cybernetic Pillow' which on the one hand sound like they may have felt out of place on the band's debut, but absolutely fit within the context of this record. You still have Marisusz's superb melancholic vocal stylings, songs still feel intriguing and atmospheric and there's still plenty of Hammond and Keys so it all feels firmly anchored in the Riverside tradition.

Regardless of style however, the production job, performances, lyrical content and overall levels of creativity and power are up to the same remarkable standard of the band's excellent back catalogue and as long as you don't hate Metal outright, or only want 12 minute Floyd-influenced tracks (although don't worry they're still here too, check out `Ultimate Trip') and nothing else, then this should really grow on you. If you hear anything negative about the album, its probably more to do with people's personal tolerance-levels of Metal or expectations of another "Out Of Myself" than to do with the quality of the record.

Overall; the album is probably the heaviest, and most succinct of any of Riverside's output to date but still fits in perfectly with their overall sound. Its well made, well written and masterfully performed, and I'd highly recommend it to anyone with an interest in the band or the style of music in general.
Warthur
There's points when listening to Riverside's Rapid Eye Movement where, if my attention wavers, I end up forgetting that I'm listening to a Riverside album and think I'm listening to late-period Porcupine Tree instead. Unfortunately, the big difference between this album and Porcupine Tree's excellent metal-influenced pieces - and, for that matter, Riverside's pretty decent debut - is that my attention *does* wander quite regularly during it. It's all very pleasantly done, but it seems to be going over territory which Steven Wilson and Riverside themselves have both covered more than adequately previously - and doing so without really doing anything compellingly interesting with it.
AtomicCrimsonRush
Shine On Riverside You Diamond!

The darlings of Poland, Riverside, are a band that I have grown to love over the years and they have produced some masterpiece work such as the recent "Anno Domine High Definition". This album "Rapid Eye Movement" is certainly not without some outstanding moments but it is also not as heavy as they eventually became. The symphonic sounds dominate, and very heart felt performed vocals. The vocals are similar to Steven Wilson's style. Mariusz Duda on lead vocals plays bass and acoustic guitar; Piotr Grudzinski is the guitarist; Michal Lapaj excels on keyboards and Piotr Kozieradzki is the drummer. The band capture a range of emotions and always produce quality music, though on this album not as consistent as others.

One instance is the powerful lead break in the acoustically driven 'Embryonic'. The song is brimming over with serenity including wind howling and intimate vocals, perhaps the band in their most gentle mood.

'Parasomnia' features a heavy infectious riff and a crunching instrumental break. '02 Panic Room' is the single that stems from this album and features in their live set often. The rhythmic pulses and swathes of synth are reminiscent of the 80s such as Human League or Depeche Mode.

'Beyond the Eyelids' features one of the great basslines of Duda. 'Through the other side' has very ambient textures, layers of synth and spacey nuances. There are some killer riffs such as the metal distortion of 'Cybernetic Pillow.' This track also has a sustained string sound on the keyboards and inventive lead work very much like Porcupine Tree.

The lengthy epic 'Ultimate trip' is a 13 minute standout track. The lead break is incredible, and the consistent metal riffing is a terrific augmentation. The structure takes on dark and light passages of musicianship par excellence. Duda's vocals are hypnotic over the spacey music sections. Grudsinski's guitar soars and sings beautifully.

The bonus disc is a worthy addition with a dreamscape of mellotron on 'Behind the Eyes' with its captivating space prog. The guitar work on the instrumental 'Lucid Dream IV' is masterful and in a sense reminded me of Alex Lifeson's style. The odd fractured time sig and Hammond organ sound are embellishments that lift the sound to a crescendo. The synth and metal guitar trade of wonderfully in a Dream Theater fashion. This is one of the definitive highlights of the album. 'Back to the River' has an ethereal outer space drone, then a 6 note phrase that locks in as a lead guitar chimes over, very similar to Pink Floyd's 'Shine On'. The lead break on this instrumental is exquisite sounding like Gilmour, or Steve Hackett. This even finishes with the 'Shine On' riff becoming a cover version of the classic, so the obvious influence is now evident.

No doubt this is a solid Riverside album but I was not as blown away by this as "ADHD" or "Second Life Syndrome", nevertheless it is great to hear these tracks live and to return to some of the songs as part of the Riverside catalogue.
bartosso
When this album was released I really disliked it. Small wonder I did, the classic prog rock and metal was not my cup of tea at that time! A few years later, after digging into Riverside' music, getting their albums, falling in love with SECOND LIFE SYNDROME and ANNO DOMINI HIGH DEFINITION I had to check if the worst (so I was told) Riverside' album still doesn't appeal to me. I've changed my mind almost completely. I really appreciated that record after a few listens, and counted it among great prog metal efforts. Obviously, it's not as good as SLS but it's not a bad one too. And what's more, I didn't find it unoriginal compared to the previous releases, as many reviewers have claimed. Sounds too sweet? Don't worry, there will be blood.

RAPID EYE MOVEMENT starts with "Beyond the Eyelids" which is a decent but at times boring song, followed by modern blues/prog rock (?!) "Rainbow Box" which is barely decent and shouldn't be there at all. Don't take a dislike after these two though, since the remaining part make up quite good musical creation. Any details? Well, first of all flaws. It is much less consistent than two previous works from Riverside. The band tries to create a hybrid of two first albums, while making it more psychedelic and dreamy and adding some space rock accents. That's why the album sounds a little bit like a musical puzzle, especially at the very beginning. The most innovating pieces - "Army of Me"(by Björk) of prog metal, that is "Panic Room" and great "Schizophrenic Prayer" which could be a soundtrack to an ecstatic dance around the fire - don't harmonize with prog metal songs like "Parasomnia" or "Ultimate Trip". The ballads are actually one of the strongest sides of this release - captivating "Embryonic" and soothing "Through the Other Side" make the album more appealing. In the end, we've got a little bit chaotic collection of songs with plenty of good ideas, but with a few longeurs too.

To be honest, even if I know that this record is far from perfection, I still like it a lot. Riverside's innate charm is what matters here. That's where emotional prog metal meets psychedelic and space rock elements combined with a few crossover experiments and oneiric lyrics. The last part of the trilogy is a creation with great merits and serious flaws, but with such songs as "Schizophrenic Prayer", "Parasomnia", "Embryonic" and "Cybernetic Pillow", RAPID EYE MOVEMENT successfully defends Riverside' good name.

Tracks ratings: 9/10: Parasomnia; Cybernetic Pillow 8/10: Schizophrenic Prayer; Embryonic; Ultimate Trip 7/10: 02 Panic Room; Through the Other Side 6/10: Beyond the Eyelids 5/10: Rainbow Box
arcane-beautiful
Another amazing album from the crazy Poles. Yea, I bought 2 Riverside albums on the same day, and this was the other one (I badly need to get the rest, cause this is one interesting band.

This album is a bit different to Second Life Syndrome, in that it is a lot more experimental and expands many genres, where Second Life Syndrome was the perfect "prog" album for them, Rapid Eye Movement was lot more experimental, and has a very raw sound, showing how much of perfect unity they are.

I still favour Second Life Syndrome a little bit more, but to be honest, in many ways, they are very equal, but very different at the same time, which is the true meaning of prog after all, well at least I believe.

This album is sadly the last in the trilogy of albums about

1. Beyond The Eyelids - Wow, what an intro. No seriously, this has to be one of the greatest intros to a song I have ever heard. Very dark & heavy. Very nice chorus. This is probably one of Riversides heaviest moments.

2. Rainbow Box -I love the use of weird percussion, it resembles the broken bottle sound in Bjork's Venus As A Boy. This song also has a very weird Creed vibe to it.

3. 02 Panic Room - Another Bjork sounding moment (Army Of Me). Very industrial, kind of like Rammstein. This also has a very gritty Porcupine Tree vibe to it. The chorus is amazing. I love how the song stops abruptly before it goes into the second part of the song. The second part is amazing with some nice with some cool experimental instrumentation.

4. Schizophrenic Prayer - Very eerie and laidback I love the vocals in this song.

5. Parasomnia - I love how the vocals come in unaccompanied. The riff in this song is kick ass. Obvious Porcupine Tree influence. Very schizophrenic. The organ use in this song is amazing.

6. Through The Other Side - A nice eerie folky song with very breathy vocals which add to the eerie atmosphere. Amazing use of sound effects.

7. Embryonic - Another amazing acoustic song. The ambient use of synths add to the sombre mood. Very soundtrack like and would be perfect in a movie, in fact, if I was ever to make one, I would definitely use this song (I'm not, I'm not that mental). Amazing guitar solo.

8. Cybernetic Pillow - Back to the metal side of the album. Very melodic song behind all the gritty stuff. Some great instrumental work.

9. Ultimate Trip -Very kick ass. This song truly shows what an amazing band these guys are. Very dramatic. This song is so spacey. It does take you on an "ultimate trip." I love the spoken word part near the end, very effective.

CONCLSUION: I recommend any album of these guys, they truly are an example of what a modern band can make.
Phonebook Eater
6/10

"Rapid Eye Movement" is full of nice moods and has a few beautiful moments too.

Riverside arrives with their third album to what is considered the weakest album by the band. For me, the weakest one would be the highly acclaimed debut "Out Of Myself", since it's kind of immature. This album on the other hand is much more mature, and with a lot of more interesting ideas and greater melodies. The style is pretty much the same as Riverside's previous album, "Second Life Syndrome", the masterpiece of the band's first period, and also of "Out Of Myself": in fact, these three albums are a sort of a conceptual trilogy dedicated to man's mind, and "Rapid Eye Movement" is the last of the three. We still find some heavy parts as well as Pink Floydish/ PTreeish moods, spacey, atmospheric soundscapes are even in this album present. Some psychedelic influences are also present, especially in the final thirteen minute song, "Ultimate Trip".

The album starts off with "Beyond The Eyelids", a wonderful piece, possibly the best song off the album. The melody is fantastic, catchy, and there are a few brilliant passages, with great musicianship and technical virtuosity, pure progressive metal.

"Rainbow Box" has a catchy chorus, with an interesting verse, with some great vocals and arrangements.

"02 Panic Room" is possibly the most famous Riverside song (they also made a video). It's a spacey and tense song, beautiful in so many ways, with some PF moods and a great catchy melody.

"Schizophrenic Prayer" is my favorite calm song by Riverside, stunning melody, catchy chorus, and with a very mysterious mood. The arrangements also are quite interesting and noticeable.

"Parasomnia" is one of the weakest Riverside songs, not so interesting, boring, and a little repetitive. Forgettable.

"Through the Other Side" is a beautiful acoustic song, with a gentle touch that makes it so ravishing. It's played with an acoustic guitar, rare thing in a Riverside song.

"Embryonic" is very similat to the previous track, but less appealing in some moments and generally weaker.

"Cybernetic Pillow" is a fantastic song, a lot heavier than the two previous tracks, and with a great, memorable chorus.

"Ultimate Trip" is the final, epic 13 minute song, with some interesting points, especially in the grand finale, but most of it bores a bit. Too bad, since it is considered the key song of the album.

The structure of the album is much different than the previous albums: here we have more short, but catchy songs, making the album generally less progressive, which is probably the reason why this album was a little underrated.

As a conclusion, a pretty good album, full of nice moods and with a few beautiful moments too. not really essential, but definitely a must listen if you like this band.

Members reviews

avestin
I've read several reviews of this album since it came out and most were not enthusiastic about it. The opinions expressed showed a mild, if not more than that, disappointment. As someone who loves Riverside's two first albums, which together with Rapid Eye Movement form the Reality Dream Trilogy, I was both interested and somewhat reluctant to listen to this album. But curiosity prevailed and I'm very glad it did as this is a very good album.

The version of the album I have has two cd's; the first is the album itself with its two parts: Fearless and Fearland; the second is the bonus cd with 5 more tracks on it and I shall get to it at the end of this review.

The first song, "Beyond The Eyelids", would actually fit fine in any of the two previous album the way I hear it. The rich sounding opening with its wonderful enveloping keyboards and the powerful guitar and bass are a perfect setup for this album. Soon they make way for a short dynamic and more aggressive passage that pushes the song forward, coming back to the original opening theme and the vocals floating in the background singing "We are none of us.". The change to a wonderful bass lead part that is then enhanced with wonderful sounding keyboards and the ever powerful guitar crunchy riffs with a following lead guitar intertwining with the keyboards and some effects in the background. It is only then, almost 4 minutes into the song, that Mariusz's wonderful vocals are fully revealed. His voice can be soothing and very relaxing, even when the surrounding is not. His ability to make his voice filled with rage is well done in previous albums and it's the same case here. Such power is poured on the listener in this song; there is a synergy between all instruments and vocals, bringing this song a few notches upwards. This song continues very well the style portrayed in the previous albums.

The following song, "Rainbow Box", is an energetic short "box". It is quite the dynamic song, without the long riffs and spacey nature of Riverside, but is not far at all from what the band did before.

With "02 Panic Room" comes an interesting twist with the use of electronics and what reminded me (and excuse me for the comparison which may sound weird) of a metal-ized Depeche Mode. there is a great use of those electronic effects to create a dark and mysterious atmosphere, but it is done wisely, not overused or overdone. Add to that the use of string section sounding keyboards and you get a full and rich sound (which again reminds me of Depeche Mode in their album Songs Of Faith & Devotion). It ends with all instruments stopping and only the keyboards and vocals going on.

Schizophrenic Prayer shows again how wonderful Mariusz's vocals are and how well he uses them. While there is not much going on in terms of complexity and change in motifs, there is great richness and intensity here.

Parasomnia marks a return to the style of the opening song. A very Rivreside-ish style; the familiar brittle and long riffs, wrapping full sound with harsh vocals that do a very good job at taking me far away in my mind. This is exactly what a musical experience should be like. To disconnect you from your current position, your surroundings and grab you to its own reality. This is something that Riverside's music has done very well for me in their previous albums and it continues to do so in this release. It required several listens for me to be gripped and when it did it was great. This song presents very well how good Riverside are at creating a sound-world, filled with intricate passages, captivating and dramatic melodies and excellent musicianship.

Through The Other Side is another example of the shorter songs on this album, which stick to a simpler melody, yet have a particular dim mood and make more use of the, say, softer side of the band and their use of effects. This is kept on in Embryonic which seems as a continuation of the previous track in relation to the atmosphere it creates and its softness (use of acoustic guitar for instance). In this "camp" Riverside does very well too. A Pink-Floyd-ish influence seems to prevail with regards to the acoustic guitar and the soft singing, though it diminishes somewhat when the lead guitar joins in (still with acoustic backing) and the vocals get more powerful.

Cybernetic Pillow returns to the electric side and is in the same "camp" as "Rainbow Box" in its more straightforward approach and minor use of effects, though it does show a fair level of complexity and like all other songs, has this bewitching and affluent sound. Just listen to the keyboards, though not in the "front" of the mix and realize how well they contribute to the feel and frame of mind of the song. The lead guitar is given quite free space to wander around and does so efficiently without "abuse of power", meaning no futile attempts at "showing off", but rather good use of its sound and power.

"Ultimate Trip", the longest song here and the closer of the album, is also my favourite here. It has all the trademarks of the band, complexity, richness of sound, heaviness. and then some. A catchy melody is the basis here and it is wonderfully built around with their instruments, effects and the passages of this song; building tension as the song goes, they construct the song carefully, develop it as it goes, creating interest along with the enjoyment of listening. Wonderful guitar and keyboards lead parts all over are very well backed up by efficient bass, drum and guitar playing. The shift from higher to lower level of dynamics also works very well, harnessing the power of interchanging intensities. This is a fabulous epic song and it does a great job at being the closing song of the album as it creates in me a need for more and anticipation for their next release.

If you're not interested in getting the two cd version, then you can stop here and go to the bottom of this review.

Disc two present five more tracks, one of them being a "revised" edition of "Beyond The Eyelids" and the second a remix of "02 Panic Room" from the album. Let me start by saying that if you can get this version of this release, then go for it. It serves as a great "companion" to the album and greatly enhances the listening pleasure from it. It also is great to listen to it on its own and can serve as a teaser for yourself if you want to get yourself in a Riverside mood.

"Behind The Eyelids" opens this cd; the title plays with the name of the opening song from the album ("Beyond The Eyelids") and the song itself is a lighter version of that track, without the intensity of the backing guitars and drums but with the glory and power of the keyboards, effects and percussion (and vocals). A very good rendition to that song; It's great to hear this version of it.

Lucid Dream IV, continuing with the Reality Dream songs from previous albums, is heavy and compelling. It has an uplifting tune and has a great bass line supporting it and very cool effects towards the end of it. This is a great instrumental piece that would have been great on the album itself; another reason to get this bonus cd version.

The remix to "02 Panic Room" is, like Behind The Eyelids", stripped from its heaviness and most guitar elements that were in the original version on the album. it sounds more "poppy" perhaps (even more Depeche Mode in this version) but I think that here it acquires a different kind of magic with its more spacey and light style.

"Back To The River", another amusing play of words, is a nice space-rock instrumental track with the band making a homage to Pink Floyd in the form of playing a short excerpt from "Shine On You Crazy Diamond". The rest of the track is also very Floyd-ish in style and fits well with the song they've chosen to interpret here. There isn't much in terms of a catchy or proper tune, but more in terms of developing an atmosphere, a frame of mind. The culmination with the short bit taken from "Shine On." is very well done. Perhaps "Back To The River" signifies this return to the roots of the band's sound, their influences.

Rapid Eye Movement, the title of the album, is the closing track on this bonus cd. Developing slowly, it builds up tension as it proceeds, relying on the keyboards and interesting effects; it gains power as the guitar gets a more lead role and the drums join in. It turns into a spacey adventure, repetitive in style as the melody is played over and over, sounding "wide" and somewhat odd, but never out of control; as if it were a soundtrack to a hallucination or a daydream. The ending with all instruments "in place" playing has a fabulous effect, cathartic almost. A great tune.

To sum all of this up: Not only was I not disappointed with this album, as I feared due to several reviews I've read, but I think it proudly stands in line with the other two previous albums. Rapid Eye Movement is a wonderful listening experience and a very rewarding one. I recommend it to everyone who liked the previous albums and to all who want a thrilling heavy and/or prog-metal album with all of the ingredients mentioned above.

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Metal Subgenres

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