Review: SAMUEL DALES – Past is Perfect

Samuel Dales - Past is Perfect

After releasing his debut full-length album “Waking From Life” in 2014, Australian guitarist and songwriter Samuel Dales took almost seven years to come up with its follow-up. The new release entitled “Past is Perfect” is out on February 12th, 2021 and it continues the path Dales previously paved with the debut. But there is more.

Delivering multi-layered, melodic progressive rock, it is quite difficult to hear Dales become a cornerstone in any popular commercial channel, and yet the inborn class laced through the unsigned Melbourne artist is indisputable and it signals a guaranteed future success. On “Waking From Life” Dales showed his influences without shame, and while the album itself could be tagged as success, the new release takes the musician one step further, but also distances him from direct copying his influences. One thing is for sure, with “Past is Perfect” Samuel Dales is definitely more skilled in his approach to songwriting what ultimately led to a much improved recording.

Instant hunches of “Past is Perfect” are that it is a completely divergent structure to 2014’s release. Aside from the more complex approach in songs, the overall vibe of “Past is Perefect” couldn’t be further from the last time Dales were at it, and it is evident right off the bat that the main focal point of the artist’s progression has been to put way more significance on the strong vocal and guitar delivery. The opening title track is fundamentally catchy mostly due to Dales’ powerful vocals that take full control of the song.

The following songs follow the title track’s suite, and it is not until “Future Man” comes forth when “Past is Perfect” takes us on a detour from the punchy and raw feel of its predecessor. The peaceful serenity that the song reveals in the intro fits flawlessly with the impending riff cannonade. The ethereal “Casino” shows a lot of promise and adds ton of variety overall. After the series of more down-to-the-ground pieces in the shape of “Twin Flame” and “Tidal King,” Dales wastes no time and is back to firing on all cylinders with anthemic “Emergences.”

Just when you think the intro of “Progenitor” lulls you in with the piano-led atmospherics, Dales unleashes the series of jaw-dropping riffs, singling out this piece as one of the highlights from “Past is Perfect.” On top of this guitar-vocal interchange through out the record, these atmospheric passages are a well-needed glue that connect the dots and make the record such an extraordinary entity. And this entity is brought to an end with “Higher,” making sure that the genre has gotten another name to look forward in the coming years.

“Past is Perfect” is a marvelous release from the Australian. Most of the album suggests towards a highly favorable future for the songwriter. With this record, Dales is finding his vocation in an ever expanding genre and has produced one of the early gems of 2021.

Past is Perfect is available for pre-order on Bandcamp. Follow Samuel Dales on Facebook.

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