Exposé Online banner

Land — Archipelago
(Periplum P0040, 1997, CD)

by Mike Ezzo, Published 1999-01-01

Archipelago Cover art

In the 70s (or was it the 60s? I can't remember...) Jon Hassell came up with his Fourth World Music concept. Soon after, other folks began to carry on in the same general terrain. Michael William Gilbert's early 80s releases – In the Dreamtime and Moving Pictures – were arguably the first to do so. Lately people like Rich Goodhart have continued the tradition, and now we can add Land to the list. What this American septet (which boasts three percussionists) does differently though, is to stress a more funky, even danceable temperament in parts, with Chapman Stick providing the grooves, and heavy accent on the drum work. In the percussion department the scenario is dominated by hand drums, and the playing is in an Indian style; one piece even includes the spoken “boles,” a kind of onomatopoeic solfege system for rhythm that Indian musicians use to transmit drum patterns. Keyboards by Jeff Greinke (a composer with numerous ambient projects to his credit), and trumpet provide the textural foundation, featuring more melodic motion, less trance inducing, than others in the genre. But for me the drummers really steal the show. American groups in this idiom, such as Land, usually steer clear of the hippie / drug / psychedelic trap that the Europeans so love to fall into; and the former are much better off for it. Spoiled in one spot by vocals, and in another by drum machine, Archipelago nevertheless has much to recommend it.


Filed under: New releases, Issue 16, 1997 releases

Related artist(s): Lesli Dalaba, Dennis Rea, Jeff Greinke, Land

Latest news

2018-11-16
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

2018-11-02
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

2018-10-17
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

2018-09-29
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

2018-09-25
Help the Psychic Equalizer Avoid Extinction – Last year we reviewed the debut album by Psychic Equalizer, a musical project of Hugo Selles. He's now working on the ambitious follow-up to that release, and is seeking funding from listeners around the world. » Read more


Previously in Exposé...

Cédric Vuille - Faire – Guitarist and multi-instrumentalist Vuille may be better known as a founder member of the Swiss Band L’Ensemble Rayé, and Debile Menthol before that. But with little to no recording activity from...  (2011) » Read more



Listen & discover



Print issues