Exposé Online banner

Cashmere — Cash Romantic Music Machine
(Roadkill Music RM-01/2006, 2006, CD)

Gargantua — Kotegarda
(Roadkill Music RM-01/2007, 2007, CD)

by Peter Thelen, Published 2008-10-01

Cash Romantic Music Machine Cover artKotegarda Cover art

These two surprising releases come to us by way of Poland, both prominently featuring violinist, vocalist and songwriter Tylda Ciołkosz, who is also a member of the more keyboard oriented group Van. Kotegarda is the work of full five-piece band project Gargantua, with writing duties shared by all members. Mostly instrumental (Tylda sings the one vocal cut among the ten), the band features keyboards, guitars, bass, drums, violin of course, and (ahem) facial noises! This is the band's second release. They offer a cornucopia of avant-garde rock stylings that live somewhere along the road between terrain once tread by classic 70s King Crimson and the more current sounds of the modern RIO camp. Guitarist Bartek Zeman commands the alternate lead instrumental voice, while the rhythm section creates precise and appealing structural playgrounds, basking in rhythmic complexity. While their music embraces some free and improvisational elements, much of what's here sounds more composed than not. The band's command of space, dynamics, and power is truly commendable; their music never approaches the prettiness of classic melodic prog, nor the brutal heaviness that Crimson once wielded. In a word – tasty.

CashMERE is on a completely different page, impossible to categorize, but every bit as excellent. This is primarily Tylda Ciołkosz' own eclectic songwriting vehicle, prominently featuring her violin and voice, along with bassist Mariusz "Doogie" Wroblewski, with drummer Wojtek Siatkiewicz and a number of other players on acoustic and electric guitars, piano and percussion. A wild mix of melodic folk, classical, jazz, swing, cabaret, and quirky rock elements, with a healthy blast of musical humor, all thrown together in a blender, waiting for the button to be pushed; the result is both exceptional and insanely engaging. There are eleven songs here, all completely dissimilar and with radically varied arrangements, the unifying thread being the voices, violin work, and rock-solid musicianship throughout. Vocals (often treated) are sung in Polish and English, track depending, evoking a variety of moods and feelings. This one has been out there a year or so already, so hopefully a followup is in the works. Adventurous listeners will definitely want to check out both CashMERE and Gargantua.


Filed under: New releases, Issue 36, 2006 releases, 2007 releases

Related artist(s): Cashmere, Gargantua

Latest news

2019-03-20
Freedom to Spend Unearths June Chikuma's Archives – Jun (June) Chikuma is well known for her video game and anime soundtracks, but she also released an album of experimental electronic music back in 1986 called Divertimento where she indulged the kind of spontaneity that wouldn't work in a soundtrack. RVNG Int'l label Freedom to Spend is bringing this overlooked item to broader attention with a deluxe reissue. » Read more

2019-03-03
Seaprog 2019 Lineup Almost Complete – The Seaprog festival in Seattle is scheduled for June 7-9 this year, and they've announced their lineup of performers. The revitalized Trettioåriga Kriget will cap Friday night, perennial favorites Marbin are on Saturday, and District 97 will finish off the fest on Sunday night. In support, they've booked a stellar variety of artists from the Northwest and around the world, including EchoTest, Markus Reuter and Trey Gunn, and the live debut of the amazing Troot project. » Read more

2019-02-21
You Can Be Part of an Ambient Electronic Project – The Gesture of History is a new electronic project put together by Sam Rosenthal of Black Tape for a Blue Girl, Steve Roach, and violist Sam Shadow. The music started as an instrumental track Rosenthal was working on for a Black Tape album, but took on a life of its own and demanded further enhancements. The majority of the funds raised will go to manufacturing costs for LP and CD editions, as well as other items as detailed on the Kickstarter page. » Read more

2019-01-31
Keyboardist Ingo Bischof R.I.P. – Keyboard player Ingo Bischof, best known as the longtime keyboard player of German band Kraan, passed away on January 29th, 2019. Bischof was born January 2, 1951 in Berlin-Kreuzberg and joined Kraan in 1975. » Read more

2019-01-11
Jazz Composer Mark Lomax, II Releases Epic 12CD Set – In addition to being a fine jazz drummer, Dr. Mark Lomax, II is a composer in residence at Ohio State University, where he has been very busy on the compositional front. The year 2019 is the 400th anniversary of the arrival of the first ship bringing African slaves to North America, and in commemoration of this, Lomax has produced 400: An Afrikan Epic, a 12 volume set of CDs featuring a variety of different musical ensembles. » Read more


Previously in Exposé...

Kantata - Samsara – For background information, go dig up a copy of Expose #14, and find the review where I spent half a page trying to describe a CD by Iwan Fals. Here, the XTC/Sting/Cat Stevens-influenced...  (1999) » Read more



Listen & discover



Print issues