Methexis: The Fall of Bliss
One of my goals has always been to favor promotion of more obscure artists over those that get vast amounts of publicity. That is why I am grateful for the willingness of people like Nikitas Kissonas to make direct contact. It is guarantee not every CD sent is going to be gem. So far the majority has turned out to be something worth talking about like Methexis.
Nikitas has been contributing to the progosphere as a member of Verbal Delerium. Even though two additional musicians do appear on “The Fall of Bliss,” Methexis is essentially Nikitas Kissonas on his own. Music originating in Greece is also a point interest. Outside of the classic Aphrodite’s Child you don’t hear much about Greek prog. An accent in the vocal and geography however are all that reflect the country of origin.
Dark, gloomy and undeniably infectious, “The Fall of Bliss” owes to the classic sound but rests more comfortably in the modern realm. The strongest influence heard may be Discipline/Matthew Parmenter. Certainly Nikitas must be a fan of the vocal style, especially in the more seething passages. The symphonic title suite holds its own identity but travels in somewhat familiar territory. The first few tracks are where something a bit more unique takes place. Imagine once again the aforementioned influences and apply them on a jazz foundation. Disillusioned singers are not exactly scarce but how often do you have a jazzy little shuffle to go along with the depression? Not enough for you? Try some Manhattan Transfer-esque harmonies just for good measure. Throw in grooves, well placed keyboards, a hint of psychedelia, quality composition, excellent guitar work and Methexis is off and running. Of course because this is modern prog the obligatory metal licks are included as well.
I knew the music would be worth checking out after hearing the website samples. The unexpected part was finding how much I liked “The Fall of Bliss” once the disc was in hand. Nikitas Kissonas is a talented musician and composer. But talent does not always translate into anything people want to hear. Methexis is a project with great appeal. Well, let me qualify that last statement. If you only like sunny happy tunes perhaps you might want to pass. I am a positive person, but good music is good music. I’ll take it in any mood. The effective blending of styles and top-notch musicianship are what makes the aficionado take notice. The alluring song craft is what keeps you coming back.
“The Fall of Bliss’ was released in 2011, but I was only recently introduced. I certainly hope this project and its creator continue to make compelling music. As the rant frequently pops up here, prog must progress. Nikitas Kissonas is doing his part and deserves support.
Nikitas Kissonas – vocals, guitars, bass, mandolin, keys, programming
Nikos Miras – drums
Jargon – piano on “Lines on a Bust”