My first exposure to the band Majestic was in 2009 when I was sent the album “Arrival“. Since then I reviewed as far back as their 2008 release String Theory. Now in 2010 the band released Ataraxia. This time around there‘s more songs while retaining the epic vibe they‘ve had all these years. The line-up here is Jessica Rasche (vocals), Jeff Hamel (guitars, keyboards, bass) and Chris Nathe (drums).
On Ataraxia, the band‘s evolution continues forward starting off with the short instrumental spacey opener, “Disarray” (3:02) which segues flawlessly into “Faceless” (7:56), which features soaring vocals from Jessica. This begins an amazing journey that stays so true to the name, Majestic.
“Wither” (9:22) is a hypnotic spacey sometimes metallic tune with vocals that captivate you right off. This is one of my favorites of all Majestic albums.
“Star Bound” (4:42) has a metallic vibe woven in between a spacey vibe that starts off instrumentally but has a “blusey” metallic instrumentation backing Jessica’s vocals perfectly.
“Numb” (4:05) continues with the spacey vibe with soft vocals with a slide guitar backing. Jessica’s vocals has a mesmerizing effect whether she sings softly or belts it out rock diva style.
“Astral Dream” (7:38) has a spacey opening bit that starts building about a minute in a half into the song. Once the drums kick in, so does the fluid guitar playing. This song alone shows off the evolution of the band’s sound. “Delusion” (4:06) is a soft funky sounding album that has some metallic bursts over half way of the song.
“Dance Of The Elders” (8:18) is a heavy spacey instrumental song that starts off softly but builds as the song goes by. Halfway through the guitars get heavier sounding yet right into place. The ending is so, Majestic (pardon the pun).
“Takes My Breath Away (2010)” (14:13) is an expanded version of a song that was originally on the compilation album, Sampler 09 form. I like this version better, because the original one didn’t sound finished yet.
“Altered State” (9:42) is another instrumental song which has a opening acoustic guitar bit over some very lush keyboards. Soon the guitar has an electric fluid vibe to it. This song has an otherworldly feel to it. The song ends with a crowd of people talking.
“Reflections” (5:13) ends off the album with an beautiful acoustic song with Jeff Hamel taking on the vocals along side Jessica‘s. There’s some spacey keyboard bits woven in.
In closing, if you’re new to the band then this is a very good introduction to the band. If you’re already a fan and have yet to purchase this album. What are you waiting for?!? Just as their last album, I have to highly recommend Ataraxia as one of the best of 2010.
Reviewed by Ron Fuchs on January 31st, 2011