Exposé Online banner

Dagobert Böhm / Markus Reuter / Zoltán Lantos — String Unit
(Ozella OZ 003 CD, 2000, CD)

by Paul Hightower, Published 2008-10-01

String Unit Cover artHere’s an album and ensemble that is more than the sum of its parts: a startling reflection of a multi-ethnic modern world tempered by a very wooden traditionalism. Dagobert Böhm (acoustic guitar), Markus Reuter (Warr-type touch guitar), and Zoltán Lantos (five-string violin) combine to create a style of modern ethno-jazz with nods to Oregon and Shakti while never mimicking either. Each of these musicians is worth seeking out for their solo work or contributions to other ensembles, but here they combine to create a set of compositions that has been described as “ambient world jazz.” Böhm has clearly studied Robert Fripp’s work, evidenced in his melodic lines that skip bravely across notes and strings, as seen in “Half a Waltz” and “”The Lake.” Lantos’ fondness for sinewy Indian and Middle Eastern modalities and microtonal phrasing is heard in “Interlude” and the opener “Indiaespara,” where the exotic merges with Western modernism via Reuter’s playing that echoes Tony Levin’s Pieces of the Sun. Elsewhere Lantos delves into more traditional jazz violin in songs like the lazily swinging “Nightbirds.” Some of the pieces can verge on the moribund, though this is balanced out by just enough liveliness, as in tracks like “The River,” to revive listeners out of their acoustic stupor. The disk closes nicely with “Time,” a lengthy blend of ambiance and exoticism where Lantos’ free form playing conjures the emotive intensity of Peter Gabriel’s Passion album, and the trio handily encapsulates all this worthy album has to offer. Recommended.

Filed under: New releases, Issue 36, 2000 releases

Related artist(s): Böhm-Reuter-Lantos, Markus Reuter

Latest news

2019-11-07
Glenn Smith RIP – Glenn Smith, founder, mandolinist, and primary composer of the DeLand, Florida based prog / fusion band Magnatar, passed away on October 18th 2019 at the age of 68, after a brief illness.  » Read more

2019-11-04
Dino Brassea RIP – Word reaches us of the passing of Dino Brassea, who sang and played flute in Cast for many years. By our count, Brassea appeared on 11 Cast albums between 1994 and 2002. He also released music as a solo artist. » Read more

2019-10-06
Ginger Baker RIP – Legendary English drummer Ginger Baker has died at the age of 80. After coming to fame with Cream in the 60s alongside Eric Clapton and Jack Bruce, he became one of the most recognized and influential drummers of the rock era. On September 25, his family announced that he was critically ill, and on October 6 his death was confirmed. » Read more

2019-08-20
Alex's Hand Seeks Spa Treatment – American / European band Alex's Hand has a new album in the works called Hungarian Spa, which looks to be their biggest and best yet, featuring a large roster of guest musicians. They're seeking funding to take the project on the road, and are looking for help from the crowd of wisdom. » Read more

2019-06-05
Legendary Co-Founder of The 13th Floor Elevators Passes Away at Age 71 – Sadly, Roky Erickson passed away on May 31, 2019. Known as the father of psychedelic music and co-founder of the ground breaking 13th Floor Elevators, Roky had a profound influence on music from the 60s to today. Plagued by his own personal demons, Roky had a difficult life and is now free of these burdens. » Read more


Previously in Exposé...

Gerard - Meridian – One of Japan's longest lived symphonic bands, Gerard has produced a long string of albums beginning with their eponymous debut in 1984, featuring an expanded six-piece lineup, which by the second...  (1999) » Read more



Listen & discover



Print issues