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“A Dream in Static” – One of the most powerful songs I’ve ever heard.

January 6, 2020

I found this song in 2018, while looking for more fantastic prog metal than I’d already heard.  “Prog” is short for progressive, but has nothing whatsoever to do with progressive politics.  I’m not that familiar with the prog rock genre which prog metal is based on, but do know that some of the early bands were Yes, Genesis (their early years when Peter Gabriel was still the singer), Emerson Lake and Palmer, and Rush. I guess Pink Floyd could be considered prog rock too?

Prog metal, is, as you might guess.. heavier.. but not always. Don’t let the word “metal” scare you away. This music is vastly different from Metallica, Judas Priest, and related bands (I like those bands a lot too, of course, but needed something different).

Prog metal is not an angry form of music. More ethereal, sometimes with fantasy themes inspired perhaps by Led Zeppelin, sometimes majestic, a very big sound. And to play this form of music, musicians have to be brilliant and very very highly skilled. It is quite a creative art form.

The big prog metal band when I was in high school and college was Dream Theater (this band is still quite popular and has inspired a great many bands), but I never got into them much, even though their musicianship is among the best in the world.  I found other bands I like much more.

In a wonderful moment of serendipity, I wandered into a Barnes and Noble – I almost never go there -preferring to get books from the library and if I buy any I buy them used.. but I remembered Barnes has for decades sold music magazines with sampler CD’s. I have found so many excellent tunes from sampler CD’s, especially back in the ’90’s. I was near B&N when I decided to go in.. hadn’t planned on going there.

I bought a copy of a British magazine called Prog, with a sampler CD. the sampler turned out to be prog metal. Hmm.. I discovered several bands, including an astounding band called Prospekt. Some of the other bands were amazing as well – or least their songs on the sampler album – Sisare, Circle of Illusion, Flying Colors. But I liked Prospekt the best.. by the way.. yes, spelled with a “k” on purpose.

Is this post about a song by Prospekt? No. I wrote about them over a year ago.

Sometime after I listened to the sampler CD, and bought the download for Prospekt’s debut album called “The Colourless Sunrise” (don’t buy the one after that – different and much worse vocalist) I wanted to find more excellent prog metal, and so I typed in Prospekt into youtube, and hoped for related videos.

One band I found was called Earthside. An instrumental group that teamed up with a few singers.

The title of the song, “A Dream in Static” is also the title of the album.

I have never heard vocals and music put together like this before!

The singer is.. I don’t quite have the words.. you’ll have to listen.

This song is about tremendous longing and loss. Trying to hard but not reaching one’s dreams or goals.

And yet, ironically, it is just.. soaring.. very moving. The singer blasts into the stratosphere.

Being that this is a prog metal song, it is long, various genres are mixed in, parts of it have heavy guitars, and a singer with an incredible vocal range. These are all traits of many prog metal songs.

The vocalist is Daniel Tompkins, from another prog metal band called TesseracT. I’ve listened to many TesseracT songs – none of his vocals are as remarkable as on Earthside’s song, and none of TesseracT’s songs are as good as this one. And that’s a shame, but..

A musical miracle happened. Tompkins and Earthside.

Here it is.. the video includes the lyrics..

 

And here is how the song was made..

 

 

 

 

 

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