One of the best ways to discover new music is to listen to whatever musicians you like tell you to; they usually have a good ear and you already like their taste, most probably, if you like the music they make. That’s why my ears perked when Alec A. Head of Ghostbound sent me Oberon‘s Aeon Chaser, the project’s latest release. When he described it as progressive rock as I was noticing that it was from Norway, I was sold; we’ve already spoken about how great progressive rock from Scandinavia tends to be. Sure enough, Aeon Chaser is a joy of an album, building on sounds familiar to us from bands like King Crimson, and Marillion to create a kind of fast paced, rich, and melancholic progressive rock. Head on down for your first taste!
“To Live To Die” is a great choice for an exemplary track because it features a lot of the unique folk/art-rock mix that makes Aeon Chaser so special. It’s almost like Toby Driver‘s Madonnawhore but even heavier on the 80’s progressive/art rock tones and sounds. The end result, especially from the incredible synth/classical piano clashes and the backing vocals’ ethereal roles, is one of creeping wanderlust, a kind of sober but powerful yearning for the night and for life. Other moments on the album enhance these vibes, making it a deep and redolent album that rewards additional spins. I’ve spent plenty of time with it over the past few days and it still reveals more textures and ideas to me.
This is perhaps its largest selling point, at least for me; there’s nothing too “experimental” on it but everything is filled with a sense of identity and a unique take on things. It’s clear that Oberon has travelled a long way to here (as is confirmed by the fact that they have been making music since 1994 under the Oberon name) and walking that road has paid off; while I mentioned plenty of acts above, nothing quite captures the ballad-y cum progressive rock feeling of Aeon Chaser better than just listening to it. If you want to dive deep into an ambitious and self conscious creation and you’re looking for something introspective and melancholy, then you could do much, much worse than digging into Aeon Chaser as winter draws close.