GUILT MACHINE Unleashes New Album In The USA
ON THIS PERFECT DAY To Release September 29th on Mascot Records USA
Arjen Lucassen creates the new prog rock project GUILT MACHINE. The band releases ON THIS PERFECT DAY September 29th on Mascot Records USA. The album will be released in three formats. Regular Edition of CD in jewel case, Special edition of CD/DVD Digipak and a limited edition CD/DVD Digibook.
“In my view this is my best side project so far,” explains Lucassen. “It comes completely from the heart, for it was written and recorded during a new inspiring phase in my life after my heavy depression. This, being an entirely new project, there were no expectations whatsoever, which enabled me to just let my inspiration guide me without any (outside) pressure.”
As AYREON fans have come to expect from Arjen, the music of GUILT MACHINE ranges from dark and heavy to atmospheric and melancholic. But GUILT MACHINE introduces some new twists as well, particularly when it comes to the vocals. Rather than putting together an ensemble cast of vocalists from the prog, rock and metal scene, Arjen has enlisted the talents of a single alternative rock vocalist, Jasper Steverlinck.
How did Arjen get an alternative rock vocalist to switch genres and sing on a prog rock project? “In the beginning, it was hard to convince Jasper to sing on this album, because he comes from a completely different musical background,” Arjen said. “He didn’t even know what prog was, but we’ve made a believer out of him! What I admire about Jasper‘s voice, besides its beautiful clear timbre, is the emotion and credibility he puts into his performance and his enormous range. Because this project features just one singer I needed someone versatile enough to portray all of the different moods, and Jasper didn’t disappoint. And he’s a really nice and dedicated guy as well!”
For GUILT MACHINE, Arjen also chose to record with a different drummer, Chris Maitland (ex-PORCUPINE TREE). “Chris was the ideal choice this time, having both the power for the heavy sections and the subtle touch needed in the more atmospheric parts,” Arjen said.
Rather than the explicit storyline you would expect in an AYREON release, the songs of GUILT MACHINE revolve around a central theme. Instead of looking outward into a world of fantasy or science fiction, the songs look inward, exploring the destructive psychology of guilt, regret and the darkest form of secret — the secrets we hide from ourselves.
“At first I asked my partner and personal manager Lori to quickly write scratch lyrics for one of the songs so I could record some guide vocals,” Arjen said. “I was so impressed by what she produced that I asked her to write the lyrics for all the songs. I was unable myself to create the type of darkly enigmatic, open-ended lyrics I wanted for these songs, my specialty being sci-fi lyrics about sinister aliens. She definitely gave the songs an extra dimension with her lyrics, exorcising the demons we both had faced in the past few years. It’s also no secret that I’ve always been a big fan of her melodic guitar style, so she also plays all the guitar solos on this album.”
Despite these differences, GUILT MACHINE still has much in common with AYREON. The songs are mainly long, “epic” tracks that feature dynamic contrasts between softer, dreamy sections and powerful, heavy passages. There are intricate harmonies, complex rhythms, soaring melodies, and an eclectic selection of instruments — all what you’d expect from an AYREON release.
Through technological advancement, ‘Forever’, a race of aquatic beings living on Planet Y, has found the secret of longevity. They have advanced to the point that they have become completely dependent on machines and are losing their emotions. A passing comet on a collision course with Planet Earth provides the opportunity to revitalize their race; ‘Forever’ harness the comet to carry their DNA to a new home on Earth. When the comet and Earth collide, the cataclysmic impact exterminates the dinosaurs (the Fifth Extinction), but from the ashes of destruction, humans arise. At first, the experiment with seeded DNA seems successful: through the humans ‘Forever’ vicariously relive the emotions they experienced before the age of machines. In order to help mankind overcome their physical ailments and mental limitations, ‘Forever’ speeds up human evolution. But the result is tragic: people develop a similar technological dependency with their emotions waning just like ‘Forever’ and moral development not keeping pace with their capacity to invent. ‘Forever’ must find a way to save mankind from its imminent self-destruction… or should they?
AYREON “01011001”the brand new studio album from mastermind Arjen Lucassen feat. selected top artists of today´s rock genres.
Guest appearances by:
Tom Englund, Steve Lee, Daniel Gildenlöw, Hansi Kürsch, Floor Jansen, Anneke van Giersbergen, Jonas Renkse, Jorn Lande, Magali Luyten, Bob Catley, Ty Tabor, Simone Simons, Phideaux Xavier, Arjen Lucassen, Liselotte Hegt, Wudstik, Marjan Welman, Ed Warby, Lori Linstruth, Derek Sherinian, Tomas Bodin, Michael Romeo, Joost van den Broek.
You can view the Album Preview below!