As the year comes to an end, the rocking trio North of Tomorrow unleashed their new record Clear as Can Be on the 8th of December 2023. Introducing their unique mix of progressive, psychedelic, and North of Tomorrow secret ingredients, Clear as Can Be is a special sonic experience that you don’t want to miss. Let me tell you more about it.
North of Tomorrow opened Clear as Can Be with the spacey Late Again, a purely progressive piece with an open sound and King Crimson vibes that promise an interesting journey coming ahead. It has a flowing structure that eases the listeners into the album while its bluesy psychedelic guitars and detailed arrangements feed their progressive urges, awesome opener!
The Pretender’s Ball comes next taking the dynamics to the next level with its groovy flow and subtle rocking riffs, that escalate into an even bigger sound with new melodies and elements being introduced with perfect layering, keeping its sound fresh and unpredictable while being fully heard and digested. Opening with jazzy vibes, Catbird Seat comes next. It has a warm sound with beautiful piano melodies in total harmony with the flowing guitars and deep groovy bass, all unified in a melodic stream that drives Catbird Seat’s core as it embarks on a flowing musical journey with synths and solos contributing different tastes and textures to its mix. It’s Always Something comes next with mixed moods, opening up with some bright melodies and an opened flow at the verse that smoothly gets darker and more emotional reaching the chorus. Reaching the 2:30 minute mark, North of Tomorrow dive into a fully psychedelic interlude with amazing keyboards supported by a solid and extremely interesting bass pushing their sound boundaries even further. I loved how these guys took all the time they needed to build up and craft The Boojum Tree’s progression right from the intro, it felt like a plain canvas that’s being slowly and patiently covered with North of Tomorrow‘s creativity, giving them total freedom to show their different colors and take the listeners on different direction without messing with the mood. Right at the center of Clear as Can Be comes the acoustic-driven Little Things, a soft touching tune with soothing guitars and heartfelt melodies offering a resting point with its calming flow and mellow pace. Introducing some country-influenced melodies and grooves to their mix, North of Tomorrow hits next with Kentuckey Burden. A unique-sounding experience that takes those melodies and grooves to the next level, mixing them with North of Tomorrow‘s cleverly crafted progressive approach in an artistic way. This allowed them to freely create a brilliant, interesting structure with unpredictable twists and turns that had me chilling while fully focused on what these guys were doing. If You Will comes with the most chill intro, had me groovin’ right away to its driving bass, synth, and sax mix and smoothly to a meditating verse with haunting vocals and subtle atmospheric melodies. It takes a smooth ramp progression that takes it into a bigger sound, allowing us to indulge in a set of overlapping melodies that even magnifies its artistic and atmospheric sound, making it one of my favorite songs off this record so far. Steering towards a more atmospheric direction comes Who Killed Love? with ambient melodies and mesmerizing saxophone, that artistically elevated my sound experience whenever it played. With Love, Marie explores a bright sound with refreshing melodies and beautiful vocal harmonies, with the classic proggy keyboards and unstoppable jazzy basslines back in action. Introducing an upbeat twist as we’re getting closer to the end of the record comes The Whole World Stopped, a moving tune where electronic elements meet rocking bluesy licks and eargasmic keyboard solos in an engaging dynamic structure with an unstoppable groove. Ending the record on a high note comes This and That with an epic sound and fluid progression, all in a spacious structure that combines diverse guitar sounds and approaches in an endless stream that I believe can hold a lot of improvisational sections when played live.
Clear as Can Be is a solid well-connected record by North of Tomorrow that clearly shows their seasoned writing skills, musicianship, and well-knowledge of their sound and direction. These guys managed to mix diverse elements and approaches seamlessly with their detailed writing and creative input into something special that I’ve never heard before. Looking forward to more from North of Tomorrow, keep on rocking guys. Cheers!