Music Preview: “Consciousness” – Innovative Progressive Rock From Mavara

Mavara will drop a new album on September 11. It’s called Consciousness. The band is composed of Ashkan Hamedi on vocals and guitar; Farhood Ghadiri on keyboards and synthesizers; Anis Oveisi on keyboards; Sina Khodaeefar on bass guitar; and James Welch sits in the pocket.

Hailing from Iran, Mavara, which translates to “beyond everything you think,” is currently touring the U.S. in support of their third album, Season of Salvation. Their fourth album, the soon-to-drop Consciousness, is a concept album that bears listeners on a timeless journey of reincarnation from the year 636 into the future.

Stylistically, Mavara combines elements of progressive rock, progressive metal and experimental rock into layered melodies permeated by tempo changes, refined lyricism and fresh sonic interpretations.

Consciousness contains ten tracks. “Invasion” begins with a shushing intro and historical narrative poetry, establishing the conceptual basis of the album. Then the track assumes a growling electronic emanation, as a soft guitar riff plays in the background. The song ramps up into a dark prog rock melody riding the keyboards and synths. “Love For Centuries” starts off with a delicious piano and synths. Hamedi’s mellow tenor flows over the melody, offering reflective coloration. Muted crying guitar notes embellish the backdrop, adding instrumental harmonies that surge and emerge gracefully.

“Childhood” shimmers with declarative causality, materializing on guitars and synths. A progressive rock melody develops like a wave, rolling and undulating with energy. It’s a beautiful song. “Living The Fast Life” opens with heavy guitars and a solid groove driving a hard rock melody, rife with stuttering guitars and eerie-sounding synths. The vocals appear in bursts, giving the lyrics a rap flavor that contrasts with the melody. “High On Power” delivers softly sparkling guitars and brilliant yet light synths. The tune is slow and laid-back, but emanates a dark intensity juxtaposed against the elegant synths. As the song gathers momentum the concentrated opaque quality increases accordingly.

“Mandatory Hero” begins with cascading guitars and tumbling piano. Then the song segues into a flowing prog rock melody of novel transient quality. A potent guitar riff opens “Time Makers,” and then transitions into a pouring melody that shimmers on ozone smelling guitars floating like a mist. “Run Out Of The Maze” features a melody thick with a mechanical essence, along with psychedelic overtones from the synths. The overall effect infuses a modicum of discordant elements into the tune that works well. Stirring guitar licks provide the tune with a Pink Floyd-like flavor.

“Illumination” starts off and remains a cappella, assuming a Gregorian chant aroma. The title track exudes a slow, resonant melody that shimmers and streams on silky guitars. There’s an exotic taste to the synths that complements Hamedi’s honeyed vocals.

Consciousness conveys melodic strength, brisk innovative prog rock flavors, precise instrumentation and proximate vocals. The sum totality of the music is dynamic progressive rock suffused with elegant creativity. Imagine Pink Floyd crossed with Blue Oyster Cult and you’ll have an idea of what Mavara sounds like. It’s good stuff and worth your time listening.

Find out more about Mavara here and here.

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