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Rising Stars [Issue #22]
Slow Motion Reign: Welcome The Future
By Mandana Beigi
Slow Motion Reign (CD Serjical Strike)

Besides the fact that this album carries the name of Serj Tankian (System of a Down) as the producer, it is also one of the finest alternative rock releases to come from the US this year. Slow Motion Reign’s self-titled debut record exudes the kind of mood and sensibility that we are used to hearing from Brit-rock bands - no rough edges and no radical shifts, but energetic and mesmerizing, nonetheless.

The band’s remarkable creativity in blending the retro psychedelic and progressive rock is what sets them apart from the formulated post-90s mainstream sound. Every song tells a different story, and every story is illustrated by beautiful arrangements and emotion-filled lyrics. Lamenting the superficiality of our modern lives (“Life Simulator,”) regretting the unsaid and undone (“Space,”) and breathing life into a fantasy (“Silent Movie,”) the album is a smooth ride through the very bumpy road of life.

Through their intricate yet intimate compositions they reflect a more poetic perspective on the world’s events and emotions. “No Way, No How” (featuring Azam Ali of VAS) is their heartfelt effort in commemorating the Armenian genocide. “Celebrate the living dead. . . brothers have not fallen in vain… tap the vain of blood and bread… phoenix rise from ashes again,” the song is a moving tribute to the tragedy that has not received its as much respect and recognition as it deserves. “One thing we did not want to do in our musical careers was to make cookie-cutter music,” says drummer Vigen Sadayian. “We want to put something out that has some integrity; that has meaning.”

Slow Motion Reign was formed a few years back in the Glendale area of LA by a group of friends - Narek Pogosyan, Erwin Khachikian, and Vigen Sayadian - who had been playing local gigs with other bands for some time. They later met Serj through mutual friends and, after listening to the band’s earlier demos, he became interested in their music and offered to produce their album. “Making the record with Serj was a great experience,” says singer/bassist Narek Pogosyan. “He gave us the freedom to be ourselves and make the record the way we envisioned it. We’ve all been making music since we were kids, so the opportunity to play for a living is a dream come true.”

The band’s superb musicianship and solid live performances have gained them the opening slot for the likes of Ozomatli, Soul Sirkus (founded by Journey guitarist Neal Schon), and Jerry Cantrell of Alice in Chains, to mention a few. Slow Motion Reign will be hitting the road again soon with their new lineup featuring guitarist Rafik Oganyan, who joined the band earlier this year.

“We’re looking forward to a progressive future, filled with solidarity and music that provokes and is full of passion,” says keyboardist Erwin Khachikian. Considering what they have accomplished so far, nothing seems too out of reach for a band that has let in a warm ray of sunshine through the world of neon lights.


Slow Motion Reign
Serjical Strike

Welcome The Future Slow Motion Reign Slow Motion Reign

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