July 5, 2020

If there’s one thing Goldray, Kenwyn House (ex-Reef) and Leah Rasmussen, cannot be accused of, it’s rushing. In existence now for around a decade, Feel the Change is only their second studio album, following on from 2017’s debut album, Rising, though part of the reason for this is Kenwyn being committed to completing projects undertaken with Reef.   Feel the Change is a psych-rock fuelled stormer of an album. Written and co-produced by House and Rasmussen, the album has a much heavier edge than their previous album, but it’s also more accessible with slightly shorter songs, only one song exceeding six minutes, and with the band still remaining true to their psych rock roots.

Photo by Tina Korhonen, 2020.

All throughout the album, the glorious vocal performances from Leah Rasmussen are well to the fore, with her shimmering and swirling voice adding colour and ethereal lightness to the music. But it’s the guitar playing of Kenwyn House which gives the album its cutting edge. There’re some seriously good riffs on this album, played in a psych groove rather than with flat out power chording, giving the feeling this album could have been released any time in the past fifty years and it would still sound fresh. The whole album is a super-charged prog-psych tour-de-force, with the band drawing on their late ’60s influences. and it has all the light, shade and colour you could want.

Opening track Oz starts with a pulsating synth intro, then the band kicks in, and immediately you’re captivated by Rasmussen’s voice, which weaves in and out of the music. There’s some driving guitar on this track, and some bubbling synth which could almost be a ‘heavier’ Gong, and there’s little doubt this track will go down a storm onstage. Feel the Change is slightly slower but still rocks, with Leah Rasmussen asking in an impassioned voice ‘can we feel the change now?’  The Forest is a powerful ballad with keyboards underpinning the song, and the intro to The Forest, pt2 could almost be proto-heavy metal with some powerful punchy guitar work from Kenwyn, and the song concluding by reprising the previous track.

How Do You Know has been released as a single. It’s an epic track with an intense riff driving the song and great vocals from Leah. The Beat Inside, with its nod towards Muse, has a relentless pounding drumbeat and an incessant guitar riff. Come On is a slower song, but it’s a powerful, psych-tinged rock tune with a very catchy riff running through the song. The album concludes with Phoenix Rising, an intense tune with another blistering guitar break from House.

That Goldray have progressed since Rising is clearly evident on an album which is a glorious soundwave of music, a joyous overload of psych and rock and ‘out there’ performances. Going down the rabbit hole has never been so pleasurable, and long may Goldray’s freak flag fly!

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