Reasoning, The - Awakening

Year of Release: 2007
Label: Comet Music
Catalog Number: CM010207
Format: CD
Total Time: 48:55:00

The Reasoning are a band formed by one-time Magenta bass player Matthew Cohen, and though there are some progressive influences present, the emphasis is primarily on contemporary rock songs, alternating between shorter, melodic, catchy tracks and occasional longer, epic material.

The addition of former Karnataka vocalist Rachel Jones as a full time member has added another appealing dimension to the band's overall sound. I have been listening to demo versions of some of these songs from almost a year ago, and my first impressions back then were that they were promising, but obviously needed polishing and embellishing in the studio. Listening to the finished product I am pleased to report that that early promise has been fulfilled; a lot of work has gone onto the material to produce a very good album, and Rachel fits into the mix quite nicely in a way that does not feel forced or an afterthought in any way. In fact, with Rachel now on board you now have a very powerful, dynamic vocal line-up with Rachel's exquisite voice, second guitarist Dylan Thompson's rockier tones and keyboard player Gareth Jones smoother, higher range. This means that you have three more than capable singers all able to sing lead or contribute vocal harmonies to add some very interesting vocal interplay to the songs.

Title track "Awakening" is probably the proggiest track on the album, opening with an extended synth intro but soon transforming into a driving, rhythmic rocker that gets the album off to a great start. The impressive triumvirate of "Chasing Rainbows," "Playing The Game" and "Aching Hunger" showcase the more melodic, shorter song based aspect of the band very well - Dylan's expressive vocal on "Aching Hunger" and "Chasing Rainbows" really gets inside your head. "Sacred Shape" slows things down a little, with Rachel's wailing, siren-like vocals giving way to an intense, compelling and evocative experience. "Fallen Angels brings the tempo back up, a powerful rocker that grabs the attention with some distorted synth notes and with a very catchy chorus, a song that I'm sure is going to become a live favorite.

"Shadows Of The Mind" (with a haunting opening violin solo from Blue Horses' Liz Prendergast) and "Within Cold Glass," featuring none other than Marillion's Steve Rothery, bring the album to an impressive end - in fact I felt like "Within Cold Glass" could have gone on a little longer, seemed to end just as it gets interesting. Having listened to the album for a while now, what impresses me is that the band have the confidence in their material to let the compositions and lyrics come to the fore, and don't feel the need to throw in solos or long instrumental passages just for the sake of it. Another strength is being able to alternate between the shorter, more melodic songs and the longer, epic ones with ease, and yet without that feeling you occasionally get when a band does that, in the sense that they cannot decide what direction they want to go. You can only achieve that successfully if you have a clear vision and confidence in the abilities of your band and in the material.

Awakening is by no means a perfect album; there are some good songs and some very good songs. But on the basis of this, the future for The Reasoning is very bright indeed.

Awakening (6:49) / Chasing Rainbows (6:06) / Playing The Game (4:13) / Aching Hunger (6:45) / Sacred Shape (6:37) / Fallen Angels (6:25) / Shadows Of The Mind (7:18) / Within Cold Glass (4:42)

Rachel Jones - vocals, percussion
Dylan Thompson - vocals, guitar
Matthew Cohen - bass
Gareth Jones - vocals, keyboards
Lee Wright - guitar
Vinden Wylde - drums

Steve Rothery - guitar solo (8)
Liz Prendergast - violin, mandolin (8)

Awakening (2007)
Dark Angel (2008)

Genre: Progressive Rock

Origin UK

Added: March 8th 2007
Reviewer: John Morley
Artist website:
Hits: 2278
Language: english


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