Label: Inside Out Music
Genre: Prog Rock
Release Date EU: April 6th, 2022
Jon Courtney – guitar, vocals, keys
Chloe Alper – bass, vocals, keys
Greg Jong – guitars, vocals
New Kind of Evil
Pure Reason Revolution is a British prog-rock band that started in 2003. After having released three records the band disbanded in 2011. As so often it was a live appearance a few years later that sparked the flame of reunion. Pure Reason Revolution played at Midsummer Prog Festival in The Netherlands with the result of the band members finding common ground again and enjoying the moment.
A comeback album called ‘Eupnea’ was released two years later and a longer tour was planned to promote the album and celebrate the restart of the band. Due to the pandemic, the scheduled tour was pushed further and further. After a while, it was obvious that a change of plans was needed. Instead of waiting to embark on a tour, Pure Reason Revolution decided to write and record new material.
‘Above Cirrus’ is the title of the new longplayer and the philosophical title came up spontaneously. While having a break during the recording, Courtney and Jong were sitting outside and watching the clouds. With Jong explaining the clouds and their name, the ‘cirrus’ cloud was mentioned, and the question was, what is above cirrus – nothing. In a way, this metaphor also describes the situation in a pandemic, when discomfort and isolation grew. At the same time, the situation allowed a new view into the world around you and the value of things grew.
‘Above Cirrus’ is an album that lyrically approaches this theme and became a very personal album, also fueled by Courtney in his role as a father. The music reflects the tension between these different aspects very well. It emphasizes the different aspects with songs like the roaring opener ‘Our Prism’. It’s a massive start to the album and reflects the heavy side of Pure Reason revolution’s sound. While fans of bands like Tool could find joy in these heavier outbursts, songs like ‘Scream Sideways’ reflect the calmer moments of the trio. Soundscapes, that is what the band builds, music that reminds of bands like Muse with the keyboard-driven density.
Pure Reason Revolution has added ‘Above Cirrus’ a very well-done album to their discography. Melodies, variety, and emotions are the key ingredients of an album that has much to offer and delights for more than just one spin on the record player.
Written by: Markus Wiedenmann