Image © Soniq Theater 2002
(01 February 2003) The second album from Soniq Theater is a 12-track progressive instrumental project by German artist Alfred Mueller entitled A Second Of Action. The album builds on Mueller's debut self-titled album (review) with additional depth, range and power. While it is vocally sparse, this is a tremendous keyboard-based project but additional samples from guitars, bass and electronic percussion clearly presents the sound of a five-piece progressive act.
The album is heavily themed and additional effects tied into the song titles underscore the arrangements. Such is the case with "The Gold Rush," "Elephant Race" and "Transsiberian Railroad." Jazzy female vocal samples in "Marakanda" are stunning. Think of Rick Wakeman, Yanni and John Tesh, but add Yes and some metal-edged influences and that's Soniq Theater. Tremendous.
We asked Mueller if he really performed all of the material and about the vocal work. He told us, "I really performed all the material, with the exception of the samples, but finally I "performed" the samples into the music. The vocalist you mean is the same one as on the first album on 'Cinemagic,' maybe you remember, her name is Suzann and she was performing on a CD specially for sampling use, which fell into my hands."
We asked Alfred about Soniq Theater's musical style. He told us, "I present a blend of progressive styles, mainly symphonic progressive rock with elements of metal, electronic, classical music, and even jazz and world music."
He told us about his influences, "Too many to mention, the most important: the great progbands of the 70s, like Yes, Genesis and Kansas, also progmetal (Dream Theater, Symphony X), electronic music (Tangerine Dream, Vangelis) and the great classical composers."
Release plans are a little sketchy just now and the artist's website is presently under revision. Mueller tells us, "Well, this one is the second release on CDR, and it seems to be the best for me, to go on this way. You should know, that my intention is to get known as much as possible. In fact Soniq Theater was played on about 40 radio stations all over the world in 14 countries. This is a very effective way to reach as many people as possible, I suppose that many thousands have heard the music of Soniq Theater until now. And if people look for Soniq Theater in the web, they can find many reviews about the albums, and also, on the coming Soniq Theater website a possibility to order a copy."
Don't judge the music on this album by the simplicity of the cover. This project is a symphonic masterpiece with a range of epic tracks that will delight a broad range of audiences. Worthy of a trans-Atlantic journey, it is truly a must listen!