When drummer Martin Lopez bowed out of Opeth at the group’s high water mark, people thought he was nuts. Turns out he just wanted to find himself, and aiding him on that journey is new (well, not so new if you’re European) “heavy” progressive act, Soen. Formed by Lopez and guitarist Kim Platbarzdis about six years ago, the duo brought on vocalist Joel Ekelöf and superstar bassist Steve DiGiorgio to fill out the lineup. No where near Opeth—probably good for Lopez’s “move on” philosophy—Soen, which means “nothing” according to the skinsman, is closer to A Perfect Circle and Tool; the music a stutter-step, quick-shutter type of “heavy” with radio rock sensibilities. To be fair, it was mixed by Tool sound guru David Bottrill, so the similarities aren’t unfounded, but it’s highly doubtful Soen will saddle next to Tool or A Perfect Circle staples on the radio station you never listen to, except to hear Howard Stern-esque exploits of porn stars and gone-wrong strippers.
As for Cognitive, we’d be remiss in mentioning it actually hit shelves (and Youtube) last year. Things being as they are in labeldom—most notably at Spinefarm’s ivory tower superiors Universal—Cognitive is just now seeing light of day in North America, with a domestic price tag to match. To make hay over a band like Soen is something we do best, so we’re premiering (loosest sense, really) the album capper, “Savia.” Go ahead. Take the Soen journey.
Oh, and if you think you’ll never see Soen in the flesh, well, the group are keen to hit U.S. cities at some point: “I have very positive memories from the crowds over there and would really like to tour in the U.S. with Soen; that is one of our priorities and I hope the opportunity comes sooner than later,” says Lopez to the Deciblog.
** Soen’s new album, Cognitive, is out this summer on Spinefarm Records. We recommend picking it up to hear Lopez’s sassy beats and DiGiorgio’s silky lines. Unless you’d rather pick up that lackluster Ashes Divide record from a few years back. The single’s OK, but the rest? Pretty boring. So, there you go, Soen or boredom.