Review by Shannon Shumaker
The best thing about Dream Ritual’s debut self-titled EP is its ability to appeal to a wide audience. As the first track, “Green World” begins, the first thing that stands out are the grungy guitar as sludgy bass tones. The quality of this music is thick and rich, but what really sells me on this track are the vocals. I wasn’t sure what I had been expecting, but when the Balance And Composure-esque clean vocals come in, I’m both surprised and excited.
Dream Ritual is a band that doesn’t necessarily fall into a single category, and the second song on the album, “Fade,” is just proof of that. The guitar tone in the beginning of this track is dirty and fuzzy, and as if that isn’t enough, the vocals absolutely deliver on this track as well. The transitions between screams to more controlled, mellow clean vocals are nearly flawless. The only downside in this fuzzy, grungy sound, is that the guitar and bass sometimes get muddy behind the vocals, especially on the second track.
Following “Fade” is the slightly heavier and more bass-driven “25,” which easily also boasts some of the strongest lyricism on the album. The only problem is, this EP seems to fall flat after this track, only to be brought up again by the softer second to last track, “Whisper.” While the guitar and bass tones throughout the EP are gorgeous and definitely mesh well with the vocal style, it also causes some of the songs to sound similar. While the sludgy guitar tone absolutely works for Dream Ritual, it also blends together at times. However, that doesn’t take away from the otherwise timeless songwriting on this record. These six tracks are songs that could have been on rock stations in the 90s but will also easily appeal to a newer crowd, and that's what makes them so strong.
Listen to "Fade"