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Showing posts from August, 2014

Zeptelar - El color de las cosas

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Hailing from Valparaiso in Chile, a coastal city and port 0.40° north of the inland capital Santiago, Zeptelar released El color de las cosas (The colour of things) last year. Fusing rock, jazz, and a light sprinkling of ethnic stylings, the group make an appealing sound that is easy on the ear.

The compositions are mostly the work of guitarist CamiloAcevedo and feature the usually wordless scat-vocals of Valentina Maradones, often in tandem with flute, piano or both. The effect is a Latino jazz-infused take on the Hatfields when featuring The Northettes. Opener De la esquina a la plaza (From the corner of the square) commences proceedings at a canter, and immediately tight-knit and complex ensemble playing is well to the fore. Hints of the harder-edged tuneage to come are given by the slightly dissonant sax blowing in the middle of the tune. An infectious number played by a band obviously in love with their craft, De la esquina a la plaza is a good start.

Syncopation is a big feature…

The MOJO CD - September 2014

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I subscribe to MOJO, and every month it lands on my doorstep, and every month there is the accompanying themed cover CD. Mostly these get played once - sometimes not even all the way through if I'm being honest - and binned. Occasionally they are keepers, but every time there are a host of bands and artists I've never heard of before, which is always good no matter how iffy the end product.

So, I thought I would start a series of reviews of the ones that are worth playing more than once.

We will start, illogically enough, with next month's offering, which I have not yet decided whether or not to Shelve or Bin, and work backwards until I run out of the keepers, and from then on I will put up a review if I think it's worth the effort.

The September 2014 offering is entitled The Dreamers, and is a loosely bound collection of music inspired by dream pop in general and Ms Kate Bush in particular, she being flavour of the moment.

1. Pinkunoizu - The Great Pacific Garbage Pa…

Knifeworld - The Unravelling

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Knifeworld are one of those "Marmite" bands, and although I can see why the more conventionally atuned ear may be initially put off, a veritable cornucopia of modern psychedelia awaits those with the chutzpah, and indeed, the intelligence to persevere. As with any band that divides opinion, the positive and negative responses are often exaggerated beyond any reasonable point. A reviewer hiding behind the pseudonym Second Life Syndrome on Prog Archives hates it to the extent that he finds it "pretentious" and the " music is merely cutting and paste (sic) grooves and melodies from classic bands", particularly Gentle Giant. He accuses Knifeworld of ripping the "brassy bassy groove" (careful, that sounded like a compliment!) of The Skulls Have Regrown Their Eyes from GG's The Power And The Glory.

Firstly, I assume he means the opening track Proclamation? Yes there is a fleeting similarity, but the two are distinctly different. Secondly, I would…

Schizo-Brainiac - A labyrinthine exploration in music

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Over the years my music scribbling has led to me accumulating a disparate collection of musical associates as Farcebook "friends". Some go on to become solid acquaintances, and, Heavens forfend, I've even met some of them out there in the real world.

The majority remain largely anonymous after the initial reason for connection has been long forgotten, and now that FB in its wisdom doesn't actually let you see a lot of what even close friends put up there, nevermind those on the "Acquaintances" or "Restricted" lists, it often comes as a surprise when a name pops up in your Newsfeed you have no recollection of. Usually these random hits from "friends" removed by several degrees of separation are of no consequence and passed over and forgotten.

Occasionally a gem of a post comes along to make you sit up and take notice. One such appeared today, and it contained a link to the Soundcloud page of an American gent going by the name of Solo Goo…

An open letter to Robert Fripp

Dear Mr Fripp

Firstly, as we have never met and are never likely to, I would not be so presumptuous as to address you by your first name, I trust you don't mind?

I read with interest and a near-confirmation of a growing suspicion your mini interview in this month's Uncut magazine. The forming of King Crimson Mk VIII was announced last year and inevitably provoked fevered interest among us Crimson fans. My friend and I speculated on possible weekends in London, Paris, Brussels, or anywhere on the near European continent, our partners enjoying whatever the locale had to offer while we were only really there for a night of Crimsoid menace.

As the months after the reformation announcement went by, and eventually the American tour dates were announced with no mention of Europe whatsoever, I began to realise that this, what is in all probability a final tour of a King Crimson involving your good self would most likely be a repeat of the last outing in 2008, that is a tour confining …