Band: Evolve

CD Title: “Decadent Lights”

Band Website:

Label: Independent Release

Label Website:

Release Date: 2008


The early eighties was an exciting time for fans of progressive rock, including fans who were in bands. For the most part everyone thought the genre had died and been put to rest, and yet there was life in the much maligned genre yet. A small cadre of bands in England, mostly in and around London began making some progressive noises. One of those bands from that time was called Mach One. I secured their one and only LP on one of my trips overseas. Well time and circumstance happen to all men and nothing much came from the release and fame eluded the band. The members split up and went their own way. Flash forward to November of 2002 when one of those band members, Peter Matuchniak, out of the blue, sent me an email. From that email I learned that after many years away from a band and any stage work, he was actively working to get a band going. That brings us to Evolve and their first release called Decadent Lights.


The band Evolve consists of Matuchniak (lead and ambient guitars, keyboards), Michael Eager (rhythm guitar, vocals), Jim Debaun (bass) and Paul Sheriff (drums). There are a number of guests lending their musical skills on a few of the tracks. We have David Gilman on flutes, violin, sax, Steven Bell on Tenor sax and atmospheric female vocals from Tali Azeradon on a couple tracks. Having taken themselves out of the day-to-day grind of the music business, starting families and getting day jobs, there was still the desire to make music, some unfinished business as it were. This was especially true for Peter so this project has truly been a labour of love.


So after getting the heads up about the music Evolve were making it was with some excitement that I had the opportunity to listen to the musical efforts on their new Decadent Lights CD. Evolve make no pretense about being a classic seventies or even eighties flavoured ‘progressive rock’ band in terms of sound or writing style and yet contained on the disc are eleven tracks that carry forward the essence of a classic progressive rock sound that is clearly placed in a modern setting. The first two tracks “Number 16” (4:20) and “War” (4:52) find the band at their most progressive with tunes that ebb and flow between fast and slow, intense and atmospheric, vocals and instrumental soloing. In fact there is a wide mix of rock styles and influences here, but there’s also a little country-rock on “Baby Come Back” (2:59), some spacey/psychedelics on “Saturday’s Gone” (4:28) and more. The compositions are upbeat, song-oriented but with a real art-rock-quirkiness allowing for many interesting musical moments to shine throughout the disc. The tunes go from moody to toe-tapping with many subtle shifts in time and tempo best exemplified in the CD’s longest track “Goodbye” (8:03). In fact it's easy to lose track of time as the music on this disc ‘evolves’ before your very ears. I'm sure the music here will appeal to wide cross section of music lovers.