Baris Dai – Ambient Conditions Pt. 2

8 december 2022

I didn’t know Baris Dai before I learned about this release, but hell yes, I like this a lot! As a Dream Theater fan I definitely hear the influences, and I’m here for it! I have a lot of respect for multiinstrumentalists anyway, and people who can create these intricate pieces of music should be celebrated. That being said: I’m well aware that this kind of music isn’t for everyone and even in the progressive scene not everyone will enjoy this. Being an instrumental release, this is really well suited for listening too while doing something else (like reading a book, chilling in a bathtub, sitting next to a fireplace and drinking a cup of tea). Like a mini-holida, this 13 minutes of me-time will be benificial to us all.

Ambient Conditions, pt.2

When Nature Wakes Up really annoys me. Because I’m SURE I’ve heard this riff before, but I cannot place it. I think it reminds me of a Haken track, but listening back, while it’s similar, it’s not the exact same sound. It might also be a Dream Theater reference, but I wouldn’t know which song it reminds me of. Big shoes to fill though, Dream Theater and Haken. Baris fills them easilly though. The melodic proggy riffs and almost synth-like guitar backings make for a well-rounded combination, on the lighter side of the prog-metal spectrum. The only part of this song that doesn’t really work for me, though creative, is the use of bells for the mainriff only to jump back to the guitar part near the end. 

Vivid Green and Birds Singing continues the story, and has a lot of Petruci references throughout. The intro riff is almost a sped-up version of Surrounded by Dream Theater (so bonus points there). I wonder if he writes in a similar way DT does (not really writing down riffs, but mainly inspirations). This song is more on the heavy side, with heavier drum and chugging rhythmic riffs. Midway through the song, where it breaks down for a bit, I was expecting more synths, but they only seem to play a backing role and glue all the parts together. 

The final track of this release is The Rebirth is Complete. It opens with a drum intro, and some light guitar tunes after. It’s a more relaxed, ambient track, though it has the rhythmic proggy elements as well. The main chord progressions though are more emotional than the other two tracks. The buildup towards the end is not only a buildup to the ending of the track, but to the EP as a whole as well. The three tracks flow really well together and while stand well enough on their own, are best listened to as a whole. 

Final thoughts

Ambient Conditions Pt 2 is a nice EP to listen too, although it might not be for everyone. You’d have to be a prog-head to enjoy this properly and enjoy all the references Baris makes. It’s a mellow EP to listen to, best enjoyed with a nice drink I’d say. Out of the three, Rebirth is my least favorite, but that’s my personal opinion. I missed Ambient Conditions Pt 1, because I didn’t know Baris then, but I will definitely check that out too!

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