Review: The Surrealist – ‘Naked Awareness’

EP (2016) | Progressive Rock, Jazz Fusion, Djent, Ambient - USA

The Surrealist 'Naked Awareness' album art

  • Naked Awareness by
  • The Surrealist
  • Release Date: September 17, 2016
  • Origin: USA
  • Style: Progressive Rock, Jazz Fusion, Djent, Ambient
  • *instrumental

I thought there won’t be something like Animals as Leaders any time soon

Sorry for the spoiler, but there is – The Surrealist. It is absolutely exciting to find something that gets near to Tosin’s band and here we find that extreme vibe that is djenty and brilliantly composed to sound like jazz. Well, Naked Awareness is a four song EP that demonstrates the awesome skill of these Boston guys, the music is crazy in nature, absolutely abstract, it exploits your inner self from the speaker.

Listen here:

Naked Awareness is a mind thrilling.

Mental rides are fun, here the entertainment is just huge, purely technical the EP is a showcase of talent. When you listen to progressive or djent you are hoping for a psychedelic vibe, Naked Awareness is full of musical brain game, the constructions used in the songs may seem somewhat repetitive to the most listeners… but it is astonishing that the song flows like that, it is over before you realize it started. It is quite rare to find something like that, the rhythm is very interesting, the changes in the riffs, or transitions are seamless, actually it is very hard to notice them, usually the songs are like one riff, that evolves. There is no aggression, but “Waves of Naked Awareness” has that buzzing and tense atmosphere, that can confuse you quite hard, nice stuff, pure jazz approach.

The Surrelist has managed to surprise me as I have been looking for such a masterpiece for a long time, masterful in playing technique, that record is a joy to listen to. And yet it sounds strange, so I am sure Naked Awareness may appeal to a lot of people, but there are few that will utterly understand what is going on here, this is where the beauty lies, the concept may be 15 minutes long, but it is full of meaning and abstract textures.

Sound and Production:

When it comes to the production value of a record, I think I step into the most important part of a review so to say. Good sound is what can attract the listener and allow the artist to fully express his intention, The Surrealist are in for a mind blow. Masterful guitar needs good recording and that is some of the most crisp and clear guitar sound I have ever heard, those muted picks in combination with the bass and the drums is creating a very distinct acoustic punch, that sound is unique for that scale.

Truly astonishing performance, that is a very loud and clear statement to the music world, watch out for The Surrealist, they are just starting.

Naked Awareness is a congrats worthy effort, that is one of the best records lately, period.


Composition, Mix & Recording — Roopam Garg
Drum Production — Erik Huang
Tracks 1, 2 & 4 Mastering — Steph Bayes
Become Whales” Mastering — Nick Petty
Artwork and Design — Taos Whittaker

Buy the album

Recommended songs: My default opinion – just listen to all of them

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Review: The Surrealist – ‘Naked Awareness’
5 (100%) 21 votes

Written By

Stefan Andonov

Guitarist, tech geek, Stefan Andonov is the founder of DjentMag, writes articles and stuff, he is also in a metalcore band - My Own Destiny. Lives in Varna, Bulgaria.

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