The progressive rock band from Warsaw, Poland, Riverside have released their eighth studio album “ID.Entity”. An album that reflects the album cover with a colourful palette of moods with a cyberpunk feel. Mixing together 80’s synths, progressive rock, ballads and screams we arrive at an album that is reflective and honest. Exploring desires, the unknown and standing up for yourself. “ID.Entity” stands strong with seven tracks where each track runs for about 5 to 8 minutes long. While the track “The Place Where I Belong” runs for over 13 minutes long. Each track could easily have its own album, as no two tracks are the same. Taking you on Riverside’s journey through the unknown.
“ID.Entity” opens with single “Friend Or Foe“, we hear a groovy 80’s synth that builds into banging drums into a slick bass line, layering again with a sci-fi synth melody. The track keeps building, pulling you into this cyberpunk world. Mariusz Duda’s heavenly vocals arrive
“Who do you pretend to be..”
“To please everyone?”
Honest lyrics that hit you right in the spot, going deep into finding out who someone really is and what their intention is with you. Honesty is key here, a recurring motif within the album.
Looking back onto the album cover, we see an AI figure with colours on its body. Bursting with colours with shades of what looks like people and buildings. Memories come back and forth. Just from the first track that runs over seven minutes with a transformative instrumental break in the middle of the track. You can hear, feel and see the world that Riverside are depicting for “ID.Entity” and we are only at the first song.
Heading into the second track “Landmine Blast“, you are once again transported into a different land of “ID.Entity”. From the song title you may have guessed that you blast through the front door with this one. The hard rock style is present here, with the guitar’s playful melody drawing the way, accompanied by the bass that guides you through explosive blast of energy. Not to mention the vocal runs that are music to my ears, it’s so peaceful against everything else. The track takes a turn towards the end of the track. It pulls back into an atmospheric break. It feels like we are drifting through time, before going right back to 100.
“Big Tech Brother” opens with a robotic vocals asking;
“If you want to hear the next song, you must agree with the terms and conditions..”
Leading to a blues triumph synths and rhythm and blues drum beat that is groovy, forming an unexpected path that is hard rock with bass pumping through. Before pulling back to just having an emotional ballad. The keyboard echos against the lyrics, feeling what they are feeling. The vocals even build to screams, hitting the top of the mark. You are on this wave that goes up and down. “Big Tech Brother” is always evolving and with lyrics
” have nothing to hide..”
“I know i will fail again..”
Is relatable and just hits the nail on the head of what life is like. Its up and down.
At over 13 minutes the longest track “The Place Where I Belong” opens with soft solo guitar and vivid vocals before consistent evolving and changing shape. You can hear the rumbling of the drums behind the soft guitar. That takes over into classic rock where guitars go off into their own world of shredding. When you hit the halfway mark, the track takes a turn. Slowing right down again, with guitar picking. Vocals echoing the truth with colourful tone. This track really shows how far Riverside have come over twenty years as a band. They can do anything and know how to visualise concepts into their music. Showcasing each member in their glory where it doesn’t feel out of place. The songwriting is perfect and can take a world on its own.
Riverside’s “ID.Entity” is a standout! The album ends with an upbeat rock track with a swinging riff named “Self-Aware“. Riverside are definitely self-aware that this album is a journey of a lifetime, filled with colourful moods that go up and down. Its time to go to another world with Riverside.
If you can’t get enough of Riverside, your in luck cause they have also released “ID.Entity” Deluxe Edition which contains two extra tracks – “Age of Anger” and “Together Again“. As well as the single edition of “Friend or Foe” and “Self-Aware“.