Thursday, July 20, 2017

GERARDO BATIZ ‎– Arlequín (1982, LP, Mexico)

Very nice, mellow, electric progressive rock album. The wordless female vocals, approaching Zeuhl at times, defines this mature work. Piano and bass drive the music forward, and the contents are highly melodic. At times I'm reminded of some of the "lite Zeuhl" bands coming out of France in the 1980s like Foehn or Musique Noise. I even hear some Joe Jackson, and that's meant as a compliment. For me, it's better than all the aforementioned bands, and comes recommended. CDRWL

Tuesday, July 18, 2017

LA MUJER BARBUDA - Agridulce (2016, Argentina)

La MUJER BARBUDA have got started as an Argentine RIO quartet, founded by Martin Pantyrer (saxophones, clarinets), Sergio Álvarez (electric guitar), Franco Fontanarossa (bass), and Lulo Isod (drums, percussion). They've opened their monstrously innovative curtain with their debut album "Musica Para Cuando Aparece El Monstruo" in 2008, followed by their second reptilian shot "Lagartos Terribles" in 2011, released via an independent label S-Music.

MIRIODOR - Signal 9 (2017, Canada)

Studio Album, released in 2017

Songs / Tracks Listing 
1. Venin (4:32) 
2. Peinturé Dans Le Coin (4:32) 
3. Transit De Nuit À Jakarta (1:58) 
4. Portrait-robot (8:47) 
5. Déboires À Munich (1:18) 
6. Chapelle Lunaire (6:49) 
7. Cryogénie (1:35) 
8. Passage Secret (9:56) 
9. Gallinule D'Amérique (1:38) 
10. Douze Petites Asperges (2:37) 
11. Le Ventriloque Et Le Perroquet (8:13) 
Total time 51:55

Line-up / Musicians 
- Bernard Falaise / guitar, keyboards, turntables, production & mixing
- Pascal Globensky / keyboards, synths, piano
- Nicolas Lessard / bass, double bass, keyboards
- Rémi Leclerc / drums, percussion, electronics

CHEER-ACCIDENT - Putting Off Death (2017, Usa)

01. Language Is 11:24
02. Immanence 04:12
03. Wishful Breathing 03:45
04. Falling World 03:40
05. More And Less 03:00
06. Lifetime Guarantee 06:59
07. Hymn 05:11

Line-up / Musicians:
Jeff Libersher / guitar, trumpet, vocals, keyboards
Dante Kester / bass, keyboards
Thymme Jones / drums, vocals, piano, trumpet, keyboards, acoustic and electric guitars, moog, noise
Carmen Armillas / vocals
Mike Hagedorn / trombone
Teria Gartelos / vocals
Sacha Mullin / vocals
Cory Bengtsen / baritone sax
Beth Yates / flute
Julie Pomerleau / violin
Joan Morrone / French horn
Ross Feller / tenor sax
Rob Pleshar / tuba
Todd Fackler / tuba

Sunday, July 16, 2017

ACCORDO DEI CONTRARI - Violato Intatto (2017, Italy)

"Violated Intact" is the fourth Accordo dei Contrari album, one of the most authoritative and admired Italian progressive jazz formations in the world. Born in Bologna in 2001, Between 2007 and 2014, the band has released three albums and has played in numerous Italian and foreign festivals: thanks to the work in studio and live activity, Accordo dei Contrari has gained significant international consensus.
After joining the Crescendo Festival of Saint Palais sur Mer in France and the Time In Jazz by Paolo Fresu in Berchidda, Contrary of Contrari began working on the fourth album in instrumental trio without electric bass: with the arrival of saxophonist Stefano Radaelli And the involvement of guests like Alessandro Bonetti of Deus Ex Machina, has achieved the ambitious " Violato Intatto".
Accordo dei Contrari, inspired by a renewed commitment, the desire to explore new territories and to deepen the elements of the instrumental formula, three years away from the previous "AdC" album, expands its sound to rock, jazz and music: The result is " Violato Intatto", a album consisting of eleven long and adventurous tracks. Recorded live in studio with minimized overdubs and mastered by the great Udi Koomran (already with Ahvak, Present, 5uu's etc.), "Violato Intatto" raises the mastery and uniqueness of the Accordo dei Contrari: a continuous and evolved dialogue between Diversity for one of the most fascinating and original formations of the European landscape. Btf

BUBBLEMATH - Edit Peptide (2017, USA)

Right from the start, it is clear to me that Edit Peptide, the new album by American band Bubblemath, represents some sort of an hommage to Gentle Giant. In fact, fans of the great an influential British band, but also of Echolyn and early Spock's Beard, should certainly be very enthusiastic about their new album Edit Peptide.
The album starts with a bang! with ‘’Routine Maintenance'', perhaps the most GG influenced piece of the album. It mixes great vocal harmonies with very dynamic music.
The next two tracks keep the momentum going with some excellent lead guitar soloing, emotional vocals, complex harmonies and very dynamic keyboards. In fact Bubblemath comes closer to what Echolyn used to do on Suffocating The Bloom.
The next track, ‘’A Void That I Can Depart To'' is, in my opinion the jewel of the album. It starts with a beautiful opening section that naturally evolves to melodic and intense parts (i.e. Echolyn's ''Shades'' and Spock’s Beard ‘’The Door’’) and finally ends in a very moving and peaceful way. This piece offers great instrumentation and vocals (like the rest of the album btw).
‘’Get a Lawn’’ is near to being a ballad but still gives us some quirky and intense vocals with some complex instrumentation. The ‘’Making Light of Traffic’s’’ calm and retro sounding first part almost actually feels like a real Gentle Giant song but quickly the band returns to intense instrumentation and dynamic harmonies. It’s a song that nearly has an ''On Reflection'' moment and features killer saxophone and keyboard solos.
The last two songs continue in the same vein and end this very good album in great fashion
Those that like their melodic Prog to be busy and intense (somewhat of a paradox?), something that bands like Spock's Beard and Echolyn (even more so) have been giving us for nearly thirty years, should really get their hands on Edit Peptide by Bubblemath. Prognosis

MUMPBEAK – Tooth (2017)

In their followup to their formidable self-titled debut on RareNoise Records in 2013, Mumpbeak again conjures up memories of vintage King Crimson, Emerson, Lake & Palmer, Gentle Giant and other prog-rock pioneers on Tooth. Led by the innovative keyboardist-composer and Oslo-based UK expatriate Roy Powell, whose other RareNoise output includes releases by Interstatic and Naked Truth, and featuring bassist and longtime collaborator Lorenzo Feliciati (Powell’s bandmate and project leader in Naked Truth who has also released the solo albums Frequent Flyer and KOI on RareNoise), this new edition of the prog-rock-jazz power trio showcases the remarkable Norwegian drummer Torstein Lofthus, who is also a member of the avant garde group Shining and the psychedelic prog-rock-jazz trio Elephant 9.

CORIMA – Amaterasu (2016, Usa)

Texas, US band playing rock-fusion in the Zeuhl vein. Their frenetic version of the genre also showcases the wide ethnic backgrounds of the musicians, sometimes sounding like a Japanese Magma.

KOTEBEL - Cosmology (2017, Spain)

This album features the “Cosmology Suite”. An ambitious work based on the musical representation of four conceptions of the Cosmos:
- The Geocentric Universe (Earth as center of the universe and God as an anthropomorphic entity)
- The Mechanical Universe (the cosmos is a complex machine where parts interact with each other based on physical laws. God does not exist)
- The Entangled Universe (rather than isolated entities, we are actually all “connected”)
- Oneness (rather than “connected” we are really one. Like waves in the sea…)
In addition to Cesar G. Forero’s “Mishima’s Dream”, the album includes a remastered version of the piece “Canto XXVIII”. A piece that Cesar wrote for Dante’s Paradiso (issued in 2010 as part of Colossus’ Divine Comedy project).

PETER GORDON ‎– Leningrad Xpress (1990, CD, USA)

Music from dance and theatre productions in a musical language equally informed by world music, tough New York City rock, pattern music, Albert Ayler jazz, and electronic music...Gordon makes it all work in these highly original tone poems from the almost Weill-ian "Leningrad Express" and "Warsaw," to the disco-Italian folk music of "Toscana," to the electronic and dissonant "In The Fields," "Trinity Site" and "Inside The Nuclear Power Plant" (text-Kathy Acker), the sublime "atonal" chamber music of"Inside Marie," the Chopinesque-Tibetan "Woyzeck's Dream," the 1920's Berlin-style "Der Kindertotentanz," and the unabashedly pretty "Pastis" acoustic guitar solo.

Thursday, July 13, 2017

SENNI ESKELINEN & STRINGPUREE BAND - Senni Eskelinen Stringpurée Band/ Fedja (2008 & 2010, CD, FINLAND)

STRINGPURÉE BAND is a new and innovative trio from the Northern Savo region in Finland, and who sports a sound that combines modern arrangements and studio technology with more traditional instrumentation and mood. The band's primary 'engine' is the electric version of a Finnish string instrument known as a kantele, played by Senni Eskelinen.
The band's music is all instrumental ranging from neo-folk to free-form, and reflecting the strong tradition of introspective and progressive tendencies found in much of Scandinavian music.
While still in their early stages, STRINGPURÉE BAND has the makings of a long-lasting and vibrant act with the capacity to produce interesting and innovative sounds for years to come. Progarchive

SENNI ESKELINEN STRINGPURÉE BAND - Senni Eskelinen Stringpurée Band (2008)
Embers 5:18
Pikkukala 5:28
Kärsivä omenapuu 5:35
Pikapuuagentti 6:27
Kuolleen miehen tanssi 8:25
Riivattu mies 4:27
Eepos 5:56
Painajainen 6:25
Kaksi dinoa 7:08

Senni Eskelinen - kantele
Kalle Ylitalo - basso
Niko Votkin - rummut

Far East Western
Last Yellow

Senni Eskelinen- kantele
Kalle Ylitalo - basso
Niko Votkin - rummut
Stringpurée Band plays 100% raw progressive kantele -music. The trio, hailing from the backwoods of the Northern Savo region in Finland, is here to win over audiences of all kinds with their innovative instrumental sound. The band has already, in its few years of existence, managed to develop a sound which is highly personal. Partial credit for this of course also goes to Stringpurée Band’s unique line up, which consists of electric kantele, bass and drums. The original music composed by the three members echoes the roots of Finnish progressive and psychedelic musical tradition. So go ahead, have some Stringpurée.

Sunday, July 9, 2017

BREZNEV FUN CLUB ‎– L'Onda Vertebrata (2010, CD, ITALY)

BREZNEV FUN CLUB hails from the province of Matera, in Basilicata and began life in the mid eighties on the initiative of guitarist Rocco Lomonaco, drummer Mario Ventrelli and keyboardist Francesco Gallipoli. Their sources of inspiration range from classical music to avant-garde, from Rock In Opposition to Canterbury and more. During their live performances they've always showcased a strong theatrical attitude introducing cabaret elements and recitative parts thanks to their front-man Franco Sciscio who joined the band in 1990.
During the years the band went through many troubles and line up changes and it wasn't until 2010 that they managed to release a real debut album on the independent label Btf/AMS, “L'onda vertebrata: Lost + Found Vol. 1”, with pieces composed from 1990 to 1997 re-arranged and properly re-recorded in studio in 2009 by a line up featuring Rocco Lomonaco (guitars, banjo, mandolin, quatro, harmonica), Franco Sciscio (vocals), Giuliana Di Mitrio (vocals), Maria Mianulli (flute), Francesco Manfredi (clarinet), Michele Motola (sax), Gianfranco Menzella (sax), Francesco Panico (trumpet), Francesco Tritto (trombone), Tommaso De Vito Francesco (bass, oboe), Michele Fracchiolla (drums, percussion, vibraphone, marimba), Pino Manfredi (piano, keyboards), Duilio Maci (violin) and Angela Schiralli (cello). In my opinion, the final result of their efforts is excellent! The sonic experiments of the band are never too extreme or self-indulgent and the well balanced arrangements avoid the wild territories of “musique concrète”. The music flows away without weak moments and I'm sure that even those who are not in love with avant-garde will find this challenging work rewarding. Italian Prog Map.

Saturday, July 8, 2017

101 CRUSTACEANS ‎– Songs Of Resignation (1989, CD, USA)

This is Fang Records first release and was produced by Giorgio Gomelsky who was at one time responsibile for producing many British Invasion bands.
Most notable to prog fans is the appearance of Bernard Paganotti (Magma) on this recording. While his influence may escape the ears, Paganotti has on a number of Zeuhl and related recordings.

GATTI GIUSTI FORTI & C ‎– La Valle Della Luna (1981, LP, ITALY)

B&B ‎– LP 0710
60年代から活躍するジャズコンポーザー/ピアノ奏者Angel Pocho Gattiが、70年代の末に打楽器奏者Giampiero Giustiら新進気鋭の若手と結成したGatti Giusti Forti & C。フリージャズを空間的モードへと磨き上げた81年の傑作。白眉はな~んと云ってもタイトルトラック『La Valle Della Luna』。予感に満ちたイマジネイティヴなインプロヴィゼイションから怒涛のクライマックスへとずんずん昂まっていく圧巻の10分。その他も空間的音響を駆使した月面旅情まんてんのスピリチュアルフュージョン全4曲収録。ジャケもいい感じ!大推薦盤!

HASSE BRUNIUSSON ‎– Mannaminne (1983, LP, sweden)

Hasse Bruniusson - MannaMinne (Alternativ ALP-14, 1983)
サムラのドラマーのソロ。彼はフラワー・キングスのメンバーでもある(パーカッション担当)。そのためか Roine Stolt が参加(プロデュースも)している。80年代デジタル・サウンド、ニューウェーヴ風ヴォーカル曲にズッコケるが、メロディは少しサムラ的でホッとする。ドラムがブルフォードっぽい "Fritt Efter Fripp" などという曲がある。未CD化(だと思う)

SKYWHALE ‎– The World At Minds End (1977, UK)

SKYWHALE / The World At Minds End 

1. Epicure
2. Hydralic Fever
3. Two Budda Garage

1. The World At Minds End
2. Eternal Optimist (Therat)
3. Boggies


Insturmental-Progressive って書いてありました。
まあ聴いてみるとその通りかもしれませんが、Jazz Rock や Fusion の要素も多分に



Saturday, July 1, 2017

ELECTROMAGNETS - Electromagnet & II (1974-75 LP/CD, Usa)

Electromagnets - self-titled 1975 Texas LP featuring Eric Johnson
Electromagnets - II (Unreleased 2nd work)

Electromagnets are best known as the launching ground for Eric Johnson, one of the great guitarists of the ’80s and ’90s. Johnson was known for his clear tones and amazing technical skill — two things that are apparent on the Electromagnets’ first and only album. The group followed the path of such trailblazing fusion groups as the Mahavishnu Orchestra, creating an amalgam of rock, jazz, blues and the avant-garde. Unlike many of their peers, the Electromagnets were loose, letting themselves bend the beat and have fun. As a result, their album is more enjoyable than most ’70s fusion records… Johnson stands out with his crystal clear guitar and tasteful solos. His presence makes Electromagnets the curiosity it is, but also makes it more than an odd historical item.

ELOITERON - Lost Paradise (1981, Switzerland)

Beautiful symphonic/prog rock album.

Wednesday, June 28, 2017

Sunday, June 11, 2017

ISILDURS BANE & STEVE HOGARTH - Colors Not Found In Nature (2017, Sweden)

Comprising six songs composed by IB's musical director and keyboard player Mats Johansson and Steve Hogarth, the richly detailed recordings feature tuned percussion, strings, woodwind, brass and voices, and within an integrated suite-like album structure.
Both a departure for Steve Hogarth and a stunning return for Isildur's Bane, the album incorporates elements of Rock, traditional music, Jazz and contemporary Classical in one brilliantly unified world.

Saturday, June 10, 2017

EASTER ISLAND - Easter Island (1979, Usa)

1. Face To Face Including Wonderer's Lament Intro 10:10
2. Genius Of The Dance 4:19
3. Solar Sailor 6:21
4. Winds Of Time 6:46
5. The Alchemist Suite A: Prelude 5:31
6. The Alchemist Suite B: Life Celebration 4:18
7. The Alchemist Suite C: Telesterion 5:31
8. The Alchemist Suite D: Resurrection 5:52
9. Summerland4:49
10. Now & Then 1:43
11. Face To Face Live 7:30
12. Solar Sailer Live 6:53

Tuesday, June 6, 2017

MAURIZIO FABRIZIO - Movimenti nel cielo (1978, Italy)

Maurizio Fabrizio è conosciuto soprattutto per la sua lunga collaborazione con molti artisti del panorama pop italiano (Angelo Branduardi, Mia Martini, Mina, Antonello Venditti, ecc.).

Sin dagli anni '70 collabora come compositore, arrangiatore e musicista in diversi album di Angelo Branduardi (La luna, nel 1975, Alla fiera dell'est nel 1976, La pulce d'acqua nel 1977, Cogli la prima mela nel 1979 e Concerto nel 1980).
Proprio durante questo sodalizio artistico nel 1978 incide "Movimenti nel cielo", un disco di forte ispirazione progressive, un autentico gioiello imperniato su una "suite astrale" per gruppo Rock e Orchestra (L'Orchestra del Teatro alla Scala di Milano). Il risultato è un lavoro molto raffinato e lussureggiante, che mescola in modo sublime ed armonioso le caratteristiche tipiche del Progressive Rock italiano con le atmosfere mediterranee e suoni neoclassici derivanti dal proprio background musicale acquisito presso il Conservatorio 'Giuseppe Verdi' di Milano.

Un lavoro di classe, ispirato e coinvolgente, tecnicamente impeccabile e suggestivo, di altissimo livello emotivo. 
A causa di problemi contrattuali con l'etichetta di registrazione l'album purtroppo non ha avuto una giusta promozione, rimanendo per molto tempo nascosto e sconosciuto ai più. 
Ancor oggi viene catalogato come un disco per 'completisti' e presente solo nelle 'vinyl room' di amanti e/o esperti del settore...

Mai pubblicato su cd, fino al 2010, quando la Universal lo ha miracolosamente inserito all'interno della Collana Progressive Italia: Gli Anni '70 Vol. 6 - The Universal Music Collection - Limited Edition (6 CD) (qui si trova ancora ad un prezzo decente).
Di certo un'edizione spartana, poco curata e senza il giusto rilievo che avrebbe meritato.

Di più recente pubblicazione (2014) è la ristampa in vinile Deluxe Limited Silver Edition su Btf .

Infine per i collezionisti in cerca dell'edizione originale è disponibile qui (o altrove... basta mettersi un poco alla ricerca, si trova anche piuttosto facilmente).

Reputandolo un disco da avere assolutamente, consiglio a tutti gli amanti della buona musica che passano da queste parti di accaparrarsi, a seconda dei propri gusti (vinilici o digitali) una delle edizioni disponibili sul mercato, e non accontentarsi di un file liquido ed impalpabile...

Sunday, June 4, 2017

FLIGHT ‎– Incredible Journey (1976, Usa)

Incredible (indeed!) mix of Jazz-Rock, Progressive and Pomp. Truly an obscure masterpiece this one. Keyboards and brass everywhere, totally OTT stuff. Side 2 is a little bit more relaxed. Get this if you can, you will be rewarded ten times the effort of finding it. One last thing: the production work is awesome on this. (Cd available here | Very low price here

Saturday, June 3, 2017

LOW FLYING AIRCRAFT ‎– Low Flying Aircraft (1987, UK) Repost!

Dan Maurer | David Cross | Jim Juhn | Keith Tippett
CD Available here
An unlikely fusion album by 4 diverse talents of the UK jazz and rock scenes: David Cross (famous rock violinist with King Crimson), Keith Tippett (experimental jazz pianist), Jim Juhn (much travelled guitarist) and Dan Maurer (drummer, who then joined David Cross Band).

GREEK FUSION ORCHESTRA ‎– Without Boundaries Κυριάκος Σφέτσας ‎Χωρίς Σύνορα (1980, LP, Greece)

Here is a rare Greek Prog/Jazz LP from 1980 released on EMI/ Columbia 14C 062 71149.
Kyriakos Sfetsas: arranger, conductor
Yannis Terezakis: piano, fender rhodes
Giorgos Theodoridis: bass
Nikos Tatsis: luth, electric guitar
Lefteris Tzimas: drums, percussion
Tassos Poulimenos: tenoro sax
Giorgos Halkiadakis: baritone sax
Stelios Vichos: alto sax
Yannis Theodoridis: trumpet
Manthos Halkias: clarinet

Sunday, May 28, 2017

CONGRESO ‎– Pájaros de Arcilla (1984, Chile)

Sophisticated, brillant, "Pájaros de Arcilla" is a solid example of Congreso's amazing mix of latin fusion, jazz-rock and progressive oriented with avant touch. An absolute masterpiece.
Cd available here

Thursday, May 25, 2017

DR. TREE ‎– S/T (1975, New Zealand)

BUY Dr Tree EMI CD Edition
When this album came out in the mid-Seventies jazz-rock fusion was at its peak and many otherwise sensible jazz musicians were wooed to the dark side. Few came out with any dignity (they just didn't get "rock") but Dr Tree from Auckland nailed it directly at a point where they were most comfortable; more jazz than rock because they were jazz musicians.
The album was reissued in late 2008: these are the liner notes for it which I was invited to write. . . .
Times change -- but not so much that this reissue of the classic jazz-rock album by the Auckland outfit Dr Tree doesn’t still sound exciting.
Today the jazz-rock fusion of the early 70s -- hinted at by Jimi Hendrix, godfathered by Miles Davis and brought to life by Weather Report and Return to Forever -- is back in the ears of a new generation of listeners.
And they too are enjoying the possibilities of a musical adventure unfettered by styles, and of musicians prepared to take risks in ways that mainstream jazz or straight-ahead rock bands today seem to recoil from.
This Dr Tree album -- their sole release unfortunately -- may come from more than three decades ago (my vinyl copy is date 1976) but it still has the capacity to thrill.
And why shouldn‘t it?
Look at the roll-call of players on hand: drummer Frank Gibson; trumpeter and percussion player Kim Paterson; guitarist Martin Winch, percussion player John Banks; bassist Bob Jackson and keyboard player Murray McNabb.
And Colin Hemmingsen guests on soprano sax.
In the early 70s these were mature musicians who had been schooled in jazz and had honed their skills at literally hundreds of gigs, but they were still young enough to be as excited by the possibilities of jazz-rock fusion as their peers and mentors overseas.
So here were some of New Zealand’s finest jazz musicians (then and now) bringing their collective skills to bear on adventurous music which had listeners and critics alike hailing them.
In fact, although they seem to be written out of the texts on Kiwi rock history, it is worth being reminded that Dr Tree won two major music industry awards on the release of this album: most promising group and top group performance. And they were both in the “rock” category.
Of course today we hear more jazz than rock in this music, which is understandable given who is on hand. But through Dr Tree, ventures under their own name or in other groups, these musicians made a contribution to New Zealand music in the 70s that should never be underestimated -- and most are still name-players in the local jazz scene today.
But that is now and this was then: so listen here to Martin Winch peel off an astral-flight solo in Transition or jigsaw’n’spiral his way through Affirmation; enjoy Kim Paterson’s taut trumpet on his own composition Eugino D; be impressed by Frank Gibson’s deft and driving drumming everywhere, but particularly on his own One For Dianne; smile to yourself at the hard-won musical intuition Murray McNabb brings to this set . . .
For two years Dr Tree soared across the jazz-rock world in New Zealand then the main-players went their own ways, always influencing, always making memorable music. Recognition of the comet-like career of Dr Tree is long overdue.
Let’s hope the reissue of this innovative album -- award-winning we remind ourselves -- affords Dr Tree and its individual members the attention and respect they deserve.
Times may have changed, but not so much we can’t hear today what a great band Dr Tree were. Graham Reid