Review by Darren Smith for MPM
Manchester based rock act Twisted Illusion and their erstwhile frontman Matt Jones are not a band that could ever be described as resting on their laurels.
The hardworking group, who have been in existence since 2014 recently won Classic Rock magazines “Track of the Week” with their last single ‘Hatred Is A Virtue’ and almost before all the plaudits have stopped flowing in, they are back with another single, the near 7 minute epic ‘Imitate Me Part 1’.
The band, formed by Matt Jones are without question one of the most hardworking outfits around at the moment. To date, they have released, not one, not two, but 20 albums in their 7 year career and developed a die hard fan base within the UK, Europe and across in America.
They have sold thousands of their albums directly to fans, across 5 continents and over 20 countries and quite remarkably, they have done this independently, without a record label, through the determination and resolve of their unrelenting founder and leader Matt.
As I said, this is definitely not a band that are going to sit around and rest on their laurels. With all those albums in the can, the Classic Rock award and the recognition of being voted Great Music Stories Artist of the Month for May, they are ploughing forward towards the world domination they so deservedly seek. ‘Imitate Me Part 1’ is the 5th single to see the light of day from their forthcoming album ‘Temple of Artifice’ which itself sees the light of day on May 28th.
If you follow the band, you will know that this is actually a re-recorded version of their debut album and is being released to celebrate that opus’s 5th anniversary.
That is not all though, as Twisted Illusion already have ‘Excite The Light’, a trilogy of albums ready to go for later in 2021 and are recording and releasing a new album each month on Bandcamp, so when I say hardworking I really do mean it. And then to top it all off, they have a double album in the pipelines, to follow the trilogy!
I have always found something completely endearing to the music that comes from Twisted Illusion ever since I first saw them in 2019. It is like they conjure up their wonderful sounds with a bit of a wizardly spell or maybe they own a witches cauldron. Instead of throwing in the odd eye of newt and frog leg they throw in some astoundingly brilliant guitar,
some pummelling drums, a slice of thundering bass, just the right amount of keyboards and an air raid siren to set the vocals up perfectly. Stir it all up with the heart that Matt Jones wears on his sleeve and hey presto, the magical sound of Twisted Illusion comes flying out to bring some joy to a world that is dearly in need of it at the moment.
That appears to be exactly what has happened with this newly recorded version of this single, ‘Imitate Me Part 1’. From the first note that comes thundering out of the speaker, it is clear that this is going to be a ripsnorter of a tune. Now, this is a band that cite Queen, Toto, Dio and Rush as their major influences and much like those legendary artists, this is a band that now how to compose a tune that grabs your attention and then doesn’t let you go.
What they have written, in ‘Imitate Me Part 1’ is something that could quite easily become their Bohemian Rhapsody. Built in three parts, like that legendary tune, this is a progtastic feast of musical delight.
The opening 3 and a bit minutes are just full of Matt Jones soaring vocals and exemplary note holding. It is a blistering onslaught of progressive metal that is worthy of a mention alongside acts like Dream Theatre and Sons of Apollo. It really is worthy of Premier League status.
Throughout the 6 minutes and 44 seconds of the track, there are so many moments of sheer brilliance, but none more so than when the brakes are put on just after 3 minutes, almost like an emergency stop and you get a seriously breath-taking 2 minute interlude with Saxon Davids taking over lead vocals. It is almost operatic, maybe symphonic and it is full of lush harmonies, delicate musicianship and is a segment of music that shows that Twisted Illusion are songwriters of the highest calibre.
Just as one glorious time change altered the magnitude of the track to take us into that piece, another, through a quite mesmerising guitar solo, takes us back out of it and sees the track build to a quite glorious finish, in the same vein that it started. Yet another exquisite instrumental moment, that the whole way through ‘Imitate Me’ segment themselves so nicely in between the stunning vocal performances.
Quite simply, ‘Imitate Me Part 1’ is spectacular, thrilling, extravagant, hair-raising, I could go on but I think you get the picture. Don’t take my word for it though, check out this most captivating single for yourself and then explore the Twisted Illusion catalogue some more. There is plenty there for every taste from huge prog rock epics to 3 minute radio friendly slices of pop rock and everything in between.
Temple of Artifice tracklisting
1 – Imitate Me: Part 1
2 – Freedom to Fail
3 – Hatred Is A Virtue
4 – Apocalypse … #lol
5 – Online and In Line;
6 – A Moment of Lucidity
7 – Imitate Me: Part 2
Twisted Illusion are
Matt Jones – Vocals and guitars
Saxon Davids – Guitars and vocals
Andy Gotteri – Keyboards
Phil Shacklady – Drums
Chris Jones – Bass
Twisted Illusion online
Website – www.twistedillusion.co.uk
Facebook – www.facebook.com/OfficialTIband
Twitter – www.twitter.com/OfficialTIband
Instagram – www.instagram.com/twistedillusion_official