There’s an album out in the world that I feel deserves more attention than it will ever get. Coming from Canada, Mystery released their latest album “Delusion Rain” last week, falling on the lighter side of progressive rock. Again being inspired by Notes Reviews to check this album out, I was familiar of the band’s last release “The World Is A Game,” but didn’t feel it warranted repeated listens. Not that the album was bad per se, it just wasn’t a memorable, noteworthy performance. I am predicting that their latest album “Delusion Rain,” though, will be an under-rated album, not only for the band but for the progressive music scene in general.
I don’t know what it is about “Delusion Rain” that moved me so much. Is it the passionate vocals? Guitars? Synths? My first guess is the notable nostalgic influences throughout the album. More than once I caught myself thinking about different bands’ sounds when listening to the album. “That section reminds me of Pink Floyd!” “How Rush of them!” “Kind of Dream Theater-y, isn’t it?” “Isn’t that part in a Tool song?” The neat thing about Mystery is they are able to provide a wide range of sound within their songs without outright copying other bands. To some this may be a turn off, but to me it’s an homage to some of my favorite bands. A main example is the bridge section of “Wall Street King,” which sounds awfully familiar to the main bass line of “Schism” by Tool. Mystery steps things up with improvisational drumming throughout the section, while laying over some elegant lead guitar solos. Another section is the main rhythm during the chorus of “The Last Glass Of Wine,” which reminds me of anything the band Rush has ever released. But even with that familiarity, Mystery makes it their own with Jean Pageau’s signature vocals and Michel St-Pere’s effortless guitar solos.
With some changes to the lineup, Mystery found a new vocalist in Jean Pageau, replacing former Yes vocalist Benoit David. Hearing this album, one would not notice the difference, since both singers sound nearly identical. I had to check Wikipedia to confirm that it was in fact someone else. As far as the lyrics and concepts of the album, much of “Delusion Rain” comments on the political and social wrongs of the world. “Wall Street King,” one of the harder tracks on this mellow album, reflects on the distancing of a father from his family due to his job. I reflect on my own family when hearing the chorus “And he didn’t see his children growing / But it’s ok because the money keeps coming in,” hoping that I am there as much as I think I am. “The least we can do is stand for what we think is right” is another lyric that always hits me, coming from the chorus in the opening title track. The following section that closes out the chorus is perhaps the best moment on the record, incorporating those deep drum hits and guitar chords, loud synthesizers, and Pageau’s mid-to-high register voice. The lyrics in every track are relatable, which serve the purpose of the album.
Although not performing in a standout role in this album, I couldn’t help but focus in on Jean-Sebastien Goyette on the drum set throughout “Delusion Rain.” Mixed in pretty high on each track, the listener can feel the pressure beat against their ears with the right set of headphones. It’s not that there are spectacular drum solos riddled throughout the album, but that Goyette’s presence is vividly felt even in the simplest of arrangements. The booming bass pedals, the crashing cymbals, the rich snares; it’s all completely necessary in this album. I couldn’t imagine “Delusion Rain” without the vibrant nature of the drums.
It’s interesting how much “Delusion Rain” by Mystery has consumed me. It’s a band I’ve barely heard in the past, with a lineup of musicians I’ve never focused on before. That’s the thing about music, though; popularity is not a prerequisite for talent. Mystery has the talent to release noteworthy, beautiful music, but will unfortunately go unnoticed by the majority of rock music listeners. For fans of bands like Yes, Glass Hammer, Jethro Tull, Deep Purple, and others, I recommend you give Mystery a listen. You can support them out by checking out their website, and by following them on Facebook for band updates.
Have you heard “Delusion Rain”? What did you think of it?