'Another Spark Of Light'
Netherlands-based ethereal gothic rock act The Dreamside only released their last album, 'Sorrow Bearing Tree', this time last year, but they have already returned with another outing that sees them collaborate with a host of guest musicians to add a different spin to their sound. The band asked their fans and gleaned a veritable “best of” songs their 20 year discography, and reworked them into acoustic and remixed versions.
The heavy leaning towards acoustic ballads see them return to their folk-tinged roots, and songs such as 'Joyfire', 'Forsaken', 'Spin Moon Magic', 'Everlasting', 'Slay Your Dragons', and 'Above And Below' sound quite simply stunning. While the remixed versions of 'Rain And Rivers', 'La Tempesta', 'Nuda Veritas', and 'Open Your Eyes' inject a heavy dose of epic dance-orientated energy into the album.
It is a strong collection that any fan of the band will certainly have to add to their collection. It would have been nice to see this as a double album with the acoustic tracks on one disc and the remixes fully populating the other in order to get a more balanced presentation. But what has been presented here is certainly strong enough to hold its own with the band's already impressive discography.
The acoustic tracks are very nicely produced with an intimate, almost live atmosphere throughout that sounds as though you are watching them in the studio. But it doesn't sound like a rushed live mix, instead there is plenty of room to move and the minimalist compositions have the space they need to create maximum atmosphere.
This may be one that's more geared towards the band's already established fanbase. And with only a few remixes tagged on the end, there isn't much for casual dance fans to take away from it. But as a minimalist deconstruction of their sound to it's purest form it is a joy to listen to. Hopefully the band will capitalise on the strengths of the intimate nature of this album and play some acoustic shows in support.