Projekt Gemineye – ‘Man of Science … Man of Dreams’ (2018)

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Projekt Gemineye, the brain child of Canadian prog-metal rocker Mark Anthony K returns with Man of Science … Man of Dreams. “Virtual Reality” was previewed a few weeks ago, and gave us a good look behind the curtain of this LP. Mark Anthony K has crafted an old-school approach with six daring songs that recall the heady days when bands like Rush and Yes ruled the musical landscape. The songs are sequenced like a vinyl release, with a dynamic that flows from side to side.

“Cosmic Sea” builds off “Virtual Reality.” Though the song doesn’t seem to share the same lyrical theme, K employs ’70s-era synthesizer textures and crunchy guitars to build the suspense. His voice, mixed low but clear, offers a hushed contrast to the chorus guitar effects and the Geddy Lee-like bass passages. “Cosmic Sea” takes flight before the first chorus, recalling a Roger Dean-eqsue scene of humanity before the guitar solos bring you back to reality.

[SOMETHING ELSE! INTERVIEW: Mark Anthony K joins Preston Frazier to discuss Projekt Gemineye’s ‘A Brand New Day,’ the second installment of a song cycle that began with 2017’s ‘An Ordinary Day.’]

“To Hope … To Dream” continues the vintage keyboard sounds with its Wish You Were Here-era Rick Wright-style synth opening. On the song, K utilizes the texture of an acoustic six-string guitar, then ratchets things up with an army of melodic guitars. His vocals enter almost halfway in, and lyrically the focus is on change and positive momentum. “Take your dreams and make it real,” the singer pleads. “To Hope … To Dream” almost convinces you that anything is possible.

The nearly 14-minute long “Secret Science” is not just the album’s epic in length, it’s also the most epic in scope. The song seems to be the thematic centerpiece of Man of Science … Man of Dreams, recalling prog behemoths like “2112″ by Rush and “Shine On You Crazy Diamond” by Pink Floyd – at least initially. The song ends up rocking harder than anything Floyd ever did, as the prog keyboards give way to a Dream Theater-like guitar passage at the three-minute mark. The contrast of parts works well. Mark Anthony K’s vocals enter over a layer of Hammond B3-ish organ. The song’s lyrical center seems to focus on a dream-like state clashing with the harsh reality of life.

“Secret Science” is a suite of songs which works well together under its lyrical umbrella. Add to that, the intricate and multi-layered guitar parts, swirling keyboards, tight rock drumming and even tighter harmony vocals and you have my favorite song on any of the Projekt Gemineye albums.

You would think “Traces of the Past,” which closes out Man of Science … Man of Dreams, would be a let down after “Secret Science” but that’s not the case. Instead, “Traces of The Past” kicks things up a notch with its harder-rocking edge. That dynamic switch, much like the sequencing on an old-fashioned LP, works so well. Clearly, Mark Anthony K is a student of great classic hard-rock albums.

“Traces of the Past” also seems like a summary of all which has gone before it lyrically, while musically there is an undercurrent of rage and urgency which makes the song unsettling yet musically engaging. In the end, Man of Science … Man of Dreams illustrates just how far Projekt Gemineye has progressed, and it remains an endlessly engaging journey.

Preston Frazier

Preston Frazier

Preston Frazier is a bass-playing lawyer living in Atlanta. His first Steely Dan exposure was with an eight-track cassette of 'Pretzel Logic.' He can be reached at [email protected]; follow him on Twitter: @slangofages. Contact Something Else! at [email protected]
Preston Frazier
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