Exposé Online banner

Frogg Café — Fortunate Observer of Time
(no#, 2005, CD)

by Paul Hightower, Published 2006-05-01

Fortunate Observer of Time Cover art

Frogg Café is one of those bands with influences you can probably spot, but whom you’d be hard pressed to describe. Their new one takes its cues from lots of places: classic progressive rock, orchestral jazz, fusion, and even 20th Century classical music all appear within the eclectic stew that is the Frogg Café sound. Underlying it all is a certain vibrant American adventurous spirit and willingness to break rules while still showing respect for forms and traditions. The band members, from the New York area, have all received higher education in music with several now educators themselves. This can often lead to a very clinical approach to music, but guiding this outfit is a willingness to embrace creativity and originality and to even have fun. Songs like “You’re Still Sleeping” recall Gentle Giant’s polyrhythmic agility and flair for non-standard instrumentation plus a blindness to stylistic barriers that allows them to go from odd-meter prog riffing to swinging jazz (featuring a slick trombone solo from John Lieto) without missing a beat. Drummer James Guarnieri’s mallets lend a Zappa-esque touch to songs like “Reluctant Observer” that gets a fuller exploration in the theatrical “Abyss of Dissension” which encompasses stately brass arrangements, sassy jazz, and mock-demonic verse that would certainly put a smile on Frank’s face. In case the genre bending abilities hadn’t yet been proven, the album closes with a harmonically challenging chamber composition featuring flute and strings. Eclecticism is definitely on the menu here – get it while it’s hot.


Filed under: New releases, Issue 33, 2005 releases

Related artist(s): Frogg Café

Latest news

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

2019-04-24
Help MoonJune Bring Great Music to Life – Like many music lovers around the world, we’ve been thrilled and amazed to hear the recordings that have been released by MoonJune from sessions at La Casa Murada in Spain. Such label stalwarts as Mark Wingfield, Markus Reuter, Asaf Sirkis, Tony Levin, Dusan Jevtovic, Vasil Hadzimanov, and many more have gathered in various combinations at the studio to produce some of the most creative music in recent years. Now, label head Leonardo Pavkovic is offering a compilation, La Casa Murada - MoonJune Sessions, Volume One, as a fundraiser for upcoming sessions. » Read more

2019-04-10
The Pineapple Thief to Tour North America – November and December of 2019 will see The Pineapple Thief bringing their music to Canada, Mexico, and the US, and famed drummer Gavin Harrison will be on board. The band has been touring extensively in Europe, but North America will be new territory for them. » Read more


Previously in Exposé...

Sigur Rós - Takk – Iceland’s Sigur Rós’ claim to fame appears to be as a European bridge between 70s progressive rock ideas and modern alternative rock. The band has been tabbed by industry magazines such as Mojo...  (2006) » Read more



Listen & discover



Print issues