CD REVIEW: Arjun - Space (EP)
by: Cyrus Rhodes
Genre: Progressive Rock, World, Epic Fusion
Sounds Like: Santana, Beruit, Jeff Beck.
Weakness: Repetitive Sound and Songs, Marketability, EP release.
From New York comes 3 piece band Arjun who just released their debut EP ‘Space” in 2013. Melding a unique yet accessible blend of unearthly guitars, polyrhythmic beats, tasty groove-ridden bass lines and infectious jam band feel the Arjun sound is a testament to how they insist on shifting the face of rock. Band members include: Eddie Arjun Peters on guitar, Lamar Myers on drums, and Andre Lyles on bass.
The EP kicks off with “Orion” a methodical psychedelic groove painted against emotionally charged musical build, dynamic rhythm and impressive musical flow leading you head first into Track 2 “Gone” This track is my personal favorite and shifts gears a bit with solid low end intro, alternative rock-fusion feel coupled with passionate guitar by Peters. Track 3. “Galaxies” possesses a dynamic instrumental eventually lending itself into a Jaw dropping Progressive Rock crescendo meshed against infectious vibe and catchy groove that flows and ebbs its way through fruition. The EP makes a solid first impression dishing out 3 impressive pieces in a row. I would classify this music as Progressive Rock, with a worldly fusion aftertaste with musical flavors that is captivating and entertaining. As the CD unfolds I can hear many musical influences reminiscent of Jeff Beck, Santana, with perhaps a dash of Joe Satriani, Weather report and Beruit. I will add this bands signature sound is quite challenging to pigeonhole. Right from the start you will notice Peters and company feel quite comfortable just letting it all hang out musically, no holding anything back. The overall musical vibe has a nice psychedelic rock, jam band, epic feel to it. The guitar playing ambience and dynamic musical flow are rock solid across they dish out mesmerizing writing and syncopated musicianship and content. Peter’s guitar licks go down smooth and are full of passion, naked vulnerability and recklessness abandon. Also present are sporadic Jazz and Progressive Rock-Fusion elements, impressive guitar soloing, and a slamming rhythm section. This is an impressive 3 piece. Kudos goes out to the amazing drum work Myers. There is not vocals, singing or lyrical content - however despite this all movements are extremely creative and entertaining. No doubt some of the meanings of these songs is buried deep within the musical content. From flipped out “Space” to “Radio Star” the perfect finale statement for a CD of this caliber this EP has something for just about everyone.
All songs over 3.5 minutes tend to drag you to the finish line. However I'll give this last comment a hall pass due to the Progressive format of the CD. It's fair to say the overall sound of Arjun Is a bit repetitive. I recommend Peters use all the guitar effects he can possibly get his hands on. Also perhaps a few off time signatures would help as most of this CD is straight forward 4/4 rock. Peters could also add in some sporadic vocals via a vocal talk box like Peter Frampton does. I fully realize this is a subjective art form but many of the aforementioned issues effect the EP's overall marketability. I typically deduct 1 star for EP releases. The Full Length Release is the most complete snapshot to judge an artists by. .
Space by Arjun is a rock solid statement. Song for song, note for note its rock solid catalogue of music. It just has a nice Jam Band rocked out musical feel and has quite a lot to offer the listener who likes this Progressive style of music. Just sit back and see where the playing takes you. Its strong suit – the song for song musical consistency and amazing playing from these 3 members. So if you like a Progressive Rock Jam Band catalogue that dishes out a mesmerizing Fusion-rock rhythms then look no further you found it in Arjun