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Life’s Soundtrack: Greylevel – Hypostatic Union

Hypostatic Union

So it does bode well for a run when within the first quarter-mile you start thinking to yourself, “You know my legs don’t feel very good, maybe I should just go back home”, which is exactly what happened today! But I kept going and turned inward and tried to concentrate on the music, which was provided by a progressive rock band from the west coast of Canada, Greylevel and their 2011 release Hypostatic Union. I passed the first mile mark in just under 10 minutes and my heart rate was too bad. Then it was up Pancoast Avenue, to the beats in second song on the album. After reaching the top of the climb it was downhill to Bridgeboro, all to the great sound that Greylevel crafts. The band calls it  ” a unique blend of progressive and emotional rock music”.GreylevelGreylevel started as a solo studio project for Derek Barber a vocalist, songwriter and multi-instrumentalist, In 2005 Barber teamed with guitarist and bassist Richard Shukin and vocalist Esther Barber (Derek’s wife) to form a real band.  Since then Greylevel has developed into a full-fledged band.

The current line-up for the band includes:

Derek Barber / Vocals, Keyboards, Rhythm Guitars
Richard Shukin / Rhythm & Lead Guitars
Davis Friesen / Bass
Tyler Friesen / Drums
Esther Barber / Vocals

Together, the band mates share a passion for creating music that aims to transport the listener into worlds of sound. ProgArchives writes that their music is

 mostly credited as a song-written, dark-surrounding, mellow-infused or technical appealing progressive sound, close to accessible PORCUPINE TREE, PINNEAPLE THIEF or NO-MAN eschewing samples (less objectively and certifiably, other mentioned idols include neo-prog or modern symphonic artists; the band itself likes to mention various prog musicians and band, as a dependent influence). By style, it is both a psychedelic modern contemplation and an Art Rock sensible eclectic spur. If there are no conceptual signs, there is nevertheless a dark or profound craft of rock and songwriting, while some of the ideas are directed towards psychological or love themes. Mellow or aggressive, technical or emotional, artistic or purely compositional, GREYLEVEL’s progressiveness is reflecting the vigor and the desirable modern movement, along some independent signs, which are enjoyable as well.

From a review at ProgArchives from Windhawk:

“Hypostatic Union” is a production that contains subtly bleak and emotionally distanced music, taking its cues from 90’s indie and alternative rock and aspiring to blend it with the majestic sounds of late 70’s Pink Floyd or vice versa: well-constructed, -performed and -recorded, with a good quality mix and production to match. The band and album alike will most likely have their main appeal amongst fans of a band like Porcupine Tree, and I’d recommend those who enjoy that type of music to lend an ear to what Greylevel has to offer.

Bleak, dark, emotionally distant maybe it’s a case of misery loves company, but I enjoyed the portion of the album I heard! I say that because the album clocks in at 67:52 and my run was thankfully over at 42:19! (10:01 per mile pace) So maybe listen to it on a six plus mile run I can hear the whole album!! Anyway, I like the album and I know it’s going to get more listens!!

Here’s “Signals” from the album!