Short album reviews by The Prog Yak. No puffery here, just a simple review and score from 1 to 5 yaks! Have a new album you'd like The Prog Yak to review? Let us know.
On the progressive rock spectrum, Soen's 6th offering, "Memorial," not only maintains the exceptional quality we've come to expect from the band, but actually raises the bar. If you loved their last two classics, "Lotus" and "Imperial," which claimed the #9 spot on our Best Prog Albums of 2021 list, prepare to have your auditory senses tantalized anew. We're so enamored with "Memorial" that you can expect to hear nearly its entire tracklist infiltrate our New Music rotation—it's that good, from start to finish.
Soen has long been a cornerstone in our station's playlist, seamlessly fusing harder sonic textures with a melody-rich framework that keeps their music both fierce and accessible. "Memorial" takes this a step further, pushing the envelope of experimentation while staying true to their hallmark tonality.
While the album doesn't narrate a singular story, it isn't short of thematic depth. "Memorial" is a labyrinthine exploration into the intricate terrains of loss, hope, and resilience. Adding a cherry on top is the masterful production by Jens Bogren, a name you may recognize from his collaborations with progressive stalwarts like Opeth, Devin Townsend, and Katatonia.
We're so enamored with "Memorial" that you can expect to hear nearly its entire tracklist infiltrate our New Music rotation...
Adding another layer of sonic allure are guest contributions from icons of the genre: musicians from Tool, Tesseract, Leprous make their mark, along with the beautiful vocals of Elisa featured on the track "Hollowed."
To summarize, "Memorial" is more than just an album; it's a poignant and powerful auditory journey touching upon some of the most salient issues that resonate with us today. You'll want to make sure your dial is set to Prog Radio to catch several gems from this great album...quite likely their best ever.