D'arcana — Premonitions
(Lemuria Music, 2007, CD)
by Peter Thelen, Published 2008-01-01The sprawling two-disc set at hand is D'arcana's third release, nearly two hours of ambitious studio recordings squarely in the modern progressive rock vein. This northern California trio is strong on melody, driven by acoustic and electric guitars, bass, drums, keys and multi-part vocal harmonies that, all taken, have a decidedly West Coast feel blended with psychedelic touches, though there are surprises at every turn. D'arcana's primary composer and de-facto leader is multi-instrumentalist Jay Tausig, who some may be familiar with from several space rock projects (Solid Space, E-Motive), or from his contributions to tribute discs. Rounding out the trio are bassist Shelby Snow and guitarist James Camblin, who doubles on synth and contributes some sweet pedal steel playing throughout, giving their sound a unique character. A guest violinist appears on a couple numbers. Lead vocals are provided by Tausig, but all three members contribute harmonies. There are plenty of nods to classic prog (influences seem to be Gentle Giant, classic Yes, Peter Hammill, perhaps Anthony Phillips era Genesis), but there's no mistaking that this is a band of the 21st century, especially given the clean production values and wise avoidance of too many 'vintage' sounds. Central to this set is the 42 minute split title track, opening disc one and closing disc two, though the travels in between provide plenty of interesting stops as well, and give the set a strong sense of variety. Premonitions is a superb release that most readers should find much to their liking.
Related artist(s): D'arcana
Asia Minor Third Album on the Way – On January 29, AMS records will be releasing the long-awaited third album by classic Turkish-French band Asia Minor. Released last year in Japan, this will be the widespread debut of Points of Libration. The album features original members Setrak Bakirel (vocals, guitar) and Eril Tekeli (flute, guitar). » Read more
Harold Budd RIP – Harold Budd, one of pre-eminent American composers of avant-garde and minimalism, has died of complications from the coronavirus. Budd came to prominence in the 70s, championed by Brian Eno on his Obscure Records label, with music that blended academic minimalism with electric jazz and electronic music. Much of Budd's best known work was done in collaboration with other artists, including Eno, Daniel Lanois, Robin Guthrie, Andy Partridge, John Foxx, Jah Wobble, and many others. » Read more
Audion Is Back in Business – Our esteemed colleague Alan Freeman has restarted Audion Magazine after a seven year hiatus. The new incarnation is available online on their Bandcamp site. Audion's history goes back to 1984, and included 58 issues up to 2013. Issue #59 is available now, and #60 is in the works. » Read more
Romantic Warriors IV – Krautrock (Part 2) Is in the Works – Zeitgeist Media, the people who have brought us the great series of documentary films chronicling the history of progressive rock, are working on the second installment of their examination of German music. Krautrock 2 will focus on artists from Münich such as Guru Guru, Amon Düül II, Xhol Caravan, Kraan, Witthüser & Westrupp, and Popol Vuh. » Read more