Today, I have got a very interesting psychedelic concept album called ‘Entropy’ by the young talented composer, DZ Riley. He dedicated his album to his grandmother, and to complete the beauty he is giving all the profits to Alzheimer’s Association.
Frankly, the album is the longest concept album that I have listened to so far this year. The album includes 14 tracks divided into different sections, but before we dig deeper into that let’s first talk about the story behind the album. DZ Riley album title has an important meaning: “The definition of Entropy (unrelated to physics) is, in a nutshell, something unexpectedly going off course, away from what was planned, and into chaos. It is a gradual decline into disorder.” He explained. Based on this he used the ancient famous Chinese philosophy Yin and Yang and its symbol to demonstrate the idea of album: “The yin’s (black) attributes among many are night, inward, dark, feminine, elderly, moon, etc. while the yang (white) is the sun, sky, light, young, life, masculine, vibrant, open, etc.” – he clarified.
While you’re listening to the album you will feel that you’re in an amazing mind journey, it’s something remembers you of the golden 60s/70s psychedelic rock scene that we miss these days. I believe that he planned for every step while making this album very well. Aside from the artwork is like a stunning painting, the idea itself is just brilliant: “The artwork depicts the duality with neurons connecting the two halves. On the left is a brain as a sustained liquid with neurons connecting to the disease on the right. It is ordered into chaos. Mixing the two halves together produces purple, the color that represents awareness for Alzheimer’s disease.” – he described how it reflects on the album concept.
Let’s talk more about music! Well, it’s just incredible! Seriously, I cannot find any negative points to talk about from elements, arrangement, mixing, singing, atmosphere, etc… You should know that all the guitar and keys lines are played by me, also he wrote all of the lyrics/concept and orchestral compositions. What I really like about this album his choices for collaborations, they’re well-chosen indeed. I can hear numerous talented marvelous musicians over here.
In my opinion, DZ Riley described the journey of Alzheimer perfectly, and this that was pretty obvious through the tracklist order:
(The Time That We Take)
II. The Mountain
IV. The Way?
i. Root Beer
ii. The Time That We Take
iii. Emotion Blue
iv. No Goodbyes
v. The Hole
The tracklist order is pretty special indeed. As you can see above there are some tracks with Roman numerals which they reflect as a part of the senior’s internal experience throughout the day. And going back to the Yin and Yang philosophy, he said; “The upper case Roman numerals represent the first half, yang, while the lower case represents the opposing half, yin.”
“The tracks without Roman numerals are sung from narratives outside of his perspective. The very first track, ‘(The Time That We Take)’, is the senior himself playing his guitar and singing an old love song. The final three tracks, ‘For You’, ‘Today’ and ‘Stage 7’, are from the outsider’s perspective, or anyone who is watching the senior fight the disease.” – he clarified what the non-Roman numeral track is about.
Finally, I would like to say that ‘Entropy’ is my favorite psychedelic rock album that I have listened to so far this year! Also, what I really love about Keefer Schoon music in his project DZ Riley is how he was capable to imitate what exactly inside his mind’s philosophy into notes. THIS IS VERY UNIQUE!