Mar de Robles — Mar de Robles (MdR)
(Mylodon MYLOCD010, 2003, CD)
by Jon Davis, Published 2004-09-01
This Chilean four- or five-piece (depending on where you look in the booklet) was a pleasant surprise. A rhythm section of fretless bass and subtle drum kit, along with congas and other assorted percussion, is topped by flashy guitar, flute, and sax, for a nice combination of complex progressive rock and energetic fusion tendencies. Three of the members provide vocals, though instrumental passages dominate, both in duration and impact. There's a balance between acoustic and electric sounds, and tapes of non-musical sounds (like snips of television broadcasts, traffic noises, and so on) are utilized to good effect. The level of musicianship is high, with guitarist Rodrigo Moris and bassist Cristián Larrondo standing out. Moris has a thorough command of his instrument, using a variety of devices and techniques to keep it interesting and serve the compositions without overpowering them. Occasional touches of humor (not silliness) keep things from becoming too serious in the midst of intricate arrangements. My only complaint (and it's a minor one) is that the intonation of the flute sometimes seems a little off. This is a nice alternative to some of the other contemporary versions of progressive rock coming out of Europe or the US, a solid, distinctive debut for a promising band.
New Aristocrats Live Album on the Way – No foolin'! These supreme musicians toured Europe early in 2020, just before touring ceased to be a thing musicians could do, and there were some hot performances captured. On May 7, some of these will be releases as Freeze! Live in Europe 2020. » Read more
Jewlia Eisenberg RIP – The sad news has come out that Jewlia Eisenberg has died. As a founding member of Charming Hostess, Eisenberg changed the face of music, bringing together Balkan klezmer, American folk, and experimental rock in a distinctive blend that garnered much praise. » Read more
SoundQuest Fest 2021 – SoundQuest Fest, first experienced as a live festival in Tucson Arizona in 2010 was created by ambient music pioneer Steve Roach. This 2021 event will unite a worldwide gathering of artists and audience members together for a 3-day online event unique in the realm of ambient music. From March 26-28th a continuous flow of streamed performances, audio-video wonder worlds and deep immersion zones will burn bright on Roach’s YouTube channel. » Read more
Kaipa - Kaipa, Inget Nytt Under Solen, & Stockholm Symphonie – In their early years, the Swedish band Kaipa were a quartet playing music in the symphonic rock vein as typified by Yes or Genesis. Vocalist/Keyboardist Hans Ludin is nearly a dead ringer for a... (1994) » Read more