Fromuz — Audio Diplomacy
((Not on label) 634479453458, 2007, CD+DVD)
by Jeff Melton, Published 2008-01-01Fromuz is short for "From Uzbekistan," the homeland country for this inspired quintet that took Tashkent by storm a few years ago. Guitarist Vitaly Popeloff leads the band in a series of fusion and semi-classical pieces that have been garnering favorable comparisons to Mike Portnoy's Liquid Tension Experiment or Planet X. I find the eight studio tracks (plus two additional pieces on the live DVD) display a great deal more heart mixed within the hot chops and charts. The "Intro" is a clear indication of the highly dramatic territory the group maps out on the two discs. Prime keyboardist Albert Khalmurzayev has a commanding role on both discs whether it's grounding pieces with Hammond organ patches or imparting homeland symphonic workouts ( as heard on "Familiarization Results"). The well rehearsed songs are much less fatiguing than other jazz rock recordings due to a clearer balance between heavy unison riffs and song structure. "Spare Wheel" could have easily wound up on a Kevin Moore era Dream Theater recording despite the lack of vocal reference point. The two non-studio tracks on the DVD include "Remark 12" and "Dual Ad Libitum." The former song is a folk-ish acoustic guitar break for the band while the latter piece is a showcase for percussionist Vladimir Badirov. Since Baja Prog the band appears to be positioned for further international dates to show people they have the right stuff.
Related artist(s): Fromuz
The Seventeenth Dream of Dr Sardonicus Festival Tickets Now Available – Fruits de Mer Records and their merry crew of psychedelic explorers are getting set to present the next The Seventeenth Dream of Dr. Sardonicus Festival. The dates are set for August 2-4, 2019 at The Cellar Bar in Cardigan, Wales. They've also announced that the legendary Groundhogs will top the bill. » Read more
Charles O'Meara (C.W. Vrtacek) RIP – A true musical original has left us. Charles O'Meara, who recorded under the name C.W. Vrtacek, was a wild-card musical talent, ranging from complex progressive rock to introspective modern compositions, with stops at many places inbetween. » Read more
Eurock Documentary Seeks Funding – We've been fans and fellow travelers with Archie Patterson and his Eurock project on the journey to discover great music. After many years of promoting and trying to spread the word,a new phase is beginning: a documentary film. Things like this don't just happen, and money does not magically appear to make it happen, so it's up to the fans to get it done. » Read more
Marty Balin RIP – One of the architects of the 60s psychedelic sound of San Francisco has died at the age of 76. Marty Balin was a singer, songwriter, and guitarist who was one of the founders of Jefferson Airplane. After the split of the original Airplane, Balin went on to form the highly successful Jefferson Starship. » Read more