Exposé Online banner

Sigmund Snopek III — Trinity Seas Seize Sees (Long Version)
(Musea FGBG 4330.AR, 2000, 2CD)

by Jim Chokey, Published 2001-03-01

Trinity Seas Seize Sees (Long Version) Cover art

Though best known these days as the keyboardist for the Violent Femmes, Sigmund Snopek’s first and greatest accomplishments have been in progressive rock. A three-act rock opera written in 1973, Trinity Seas Seize Sees was by far this Milwaukee native’s most ambitious work. Only nineteen of its songs got recorded at the time, and only seventeen of those appeared on the 1974 album release of the first act. For various reasons, Trinity drifted onto the back burner, where it remained until Snopek began to breathe new life into it in 1996 by starting to record the remainder of the opera. Completed at last, the opera appears in its entirety on this double-CD set, utilizing both the 1974 recordings and those done in the past four years. Two hours long and comprising 48 tracks, Trinity is a difficult work to describe in a brief review. Partly humorous, partly serious, it presents an interplanetary allegory of freedom, domination, war and redemption that stands halfway between the silliness of Daevid Allen’s “Planet Gong” mythology and the cryptic spirituality of Magma’s Kobaïan cycle. Musically speaking, Trinity’s in the same camp as Snopek’s two other reissues, Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf and Nobody to Dream, although comparisons to early Zappa and Aphrodite’s Child are also appropriate. As always, Snopek uses a wide range of instruments and guest musicians to interweave pop, psych, jazz, spoken word, classical, and choral music into a complex, yet seamless whole. The material recorded in 1974 leans in a psychedelic direction; especially on “Waukesha Windows,” which sounds like it came straight from the year 1969. The recently recorded songs, by contrast, have heavy space rock inflections. Still, the whole opera manages to come together stylistically — a true testament to Snopek’s talent as a composer and arranger. As quirky as it is sublime, Trinity Seas Seize Sees may not immediately appeal to everyone, but those who have acquired a taste for Snopek’s brand of prog may well consider it to be a masterpiece.


Filed under: New releases, Reissues, Issue 21, 2000 releases

Related artist(s): Sigmund Snopek III

Latest news

2020-02-18
Jon Christensen RIP – Word reaches us today of the passing of Norwegian drummer Jon Christensen, a musician whose sensitive playing did much to help define the atmospheric sound of ECM jazz recordings. His work with Jan Garbarek, Bobo Stenson, Terje Rypdal, and many more was sensitive and varied, adapting to a wide variety of styles while maintaining a distinct identity of its own. Christensen was 76. » Read more

2020-01-21
Gong Announces UK Tour for 2020 – Having spent the last few years touring the world, including dates in Japan with psych legend Steve Hillage, multiple headline European tours and festivals, America’s Cruise to the Edge festival, a South America headline tour, and a headline performance at Tomorrow Festival in China, the band have won the hearts of both traditional and modern Gong fanbases. During this live journey, Gong has delved further into the truly psychedelic, exploratory, and mind-expanding side of the music. » Read more

2020-01-15
Carlos Alvarado RIP – Carlos Alvarado, pioneering composer, multi-instrumentalist and pioneer of progressive rock and electronic experimental music in Mexico, passed away January 14th, 2020 at age 68 after a two year battle with cancer.  » Read more

2020-01-12
Wolfgang Dauner RIP – Pianist Wolfgang Dauner, one of the pioneers of both European free jazz and jazz rock, has died at the age of 84. With his own groups and with the United Jazz+Rock Ensemble, his playing and compositions were a prominent presence in European jazz from the mid-60s until just recently. » Read more

2020-01-12
Michael Allison RIP – Michael Allison, who since 1997 has been recording as Darshan Ambient, passed away on January 9th after a long and brave battle with cancer. He has been at at the forefront of the new ambient/electronic music scene, with over eighteen releases to his credit. » Read more


Previously in Exposé...

Birdsongs of the Mesozoic - 2001 Live Birds – Since the moment I first heard Magnetic Flip around twenty years ago, I’ve been a fan of this band, and have followed their progress with pleasure, enjoying each new phase as much as the previous,...  (2006) » Read more



Listen & discover

Stravinsky rocks!



Print issues