Burnt Belief — Etymology
(Alchemy Records (US) ALCD1028, 2014, CD)
by Jon Davis, Published 2014-11-10
With their second collaborative release, Colin Edwin and Jon Durant have taken their previous album's title as a band name. I haven't heard Burnt Belief (the album), so I can't compare the two, but I can tell you that Etymology is a big fat slab of atmospheric instrumental music that ranges from nearly ambient to pretty noisy and rocking. I've heard it described as post-rock, though to my ears it's not much like the main players in that field. It's more like a cross between No-Man and Porcupine Tree (though without the metal inflections) with some Jansen / Barbieri textures thrown in. Or Jansen / Barbieri / Karn, since Edwin's fretless bass occasionally brings to mind Mick Karn's distinctive sound. Burnt Belief sits comfortably on a shelf with other modern practitioners like Kaukasus who don't shy away from electronics and programming, but don't let it define their sound, instead working it into the textures and moods while maintaining a human feel. The tracks that feature the violin of Steve Bingham are particularly lush and evocative, though Durant's guitar gets more time in the spotlight. His melodies are played with lots of flair and extensive use of the whammy bar, though it doesn't come off as clichéd or gratuitous. I wouldn't hesitate to recommend this to post-rock fans, though it would be in hopes that they expand their range rather than because Burnt Belief actually fits in. It's good stuff, though at 71 minutes it's kind of overwhelming.
Gong Announces UK Tour for 2020 – Having spent the last few years touring the world, including dates in Japan with psych legend Steve Hillage, multiple headline European tours and festivals, America’s Cruise to the Edge festival, a South America headline tour, and a headline performance at Tomorrow Festival in China, the band have won the hearts of both traditional and modern Gong fanbases. During this live journey, Gong has delved further into the truly psychedelic, exploratory, and mind-expanding side of the music. » Read more
Wolfgang Dauner RIP – Pianist Wolfgang Dauner, one of the pioneers of both European free jazz and jazz rock, has died at the age of 84. With his own groups and with the United Jazz+Rock Ensemble, his playing and compositions were a prominent presence in European jazz from the mid-60s until just recently. » Read more
Michael Allison RIP – Michael Allison, who since 1997 has been recording as Darshan Ambient, passed away on January 9th after a long and brave battle with cancer. He has been at at the forefront of the new ambient/electronic music scene, with over eighteen releases to his credit. » Read more
Neil Peart RIP – One of rock music's defining drummers has died at the age of 67. Neil Peart's work with Rush provided one of the templates for percussion in rock, and he certainly ranks in the top ten most influential drummers of the 20th Century. Peart retired from playing in 2015 due to health issues, and succumbed to brain cancer on January 7, 2020. » Read more