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Komintern - Le Bal du Rat Mort  CD (album) cover

LE BAL DU RAT MORT

Komintern

 

RIO/Avant-Prog

4.23 | 16 ratings

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avestin
Special Collaborator
Honorary Collaborator
4 stars How would like an hour to fool around, forget yourself and be guided by a myriad of humoristic sounds? You are bound to get entertained with this release. Its eclectic nature and funny parts, sounds and some noises will guarantee ~32 minutes of comic relief from your everyday life troubles. All in all, this is a wacky release which explores the amusing side of music and is also an experimental composition that goes for a stroll all around the block for musical ideas and structures while bringing in their own luggage.

Goofiness. They like to play around, be funny and humorous and at the same time carry on a serious message (look at their bio for background). Their way is maybe a different approach to seriousness?

"Bal pour rat Mort" is a very dynamic, and ever changing album that develops, changes main themes, explores and goes on and on in its search for new sounds, new avenues in which the music can develop. And all, it seems, with good sense of humour.

As we start off, already within one minute you get several styles of music - March, Tango, 60's movie soundtrack and plain oddities. If this is what you get in less than one minute, you can imagine what the whole track of more than 16 minutes delivers. The main instruments here are the sax, trumpets and accordion. They lead this "strange" interplay between styles and moods and lead from a cheerful music to a more wild one (you can imagine how a sax might do this) to a more relaxed tune and even to a formal sounding one as is heard right at the beginning with the march like part. Around the 4th minute we get a jazz-rock interlude with occasional violins and nice bass background and rhythms provided by the organ. Towards 6 minutes we get a more smooth sensation as we gear a more rock lead part with the guitar making its wah- wah appearance. But it is not long before we "deteriorate" back into the demented abyss in which the oddity takes over again and guides us through what appears at first listens as a maze, but once you listen to this enough times, you learn to appreciate the intricacies of composing such a piece and the how subtle are the changes from each style to the other between the different parts. I will not drag you with me in describing the various parts and changes portrayed here and will only conclude that the term boring does not apply here.

Most of the album is instrumental, and the instruments do the talking (mainly the sax and trumpets but the others get a fair representation as well). There are however songs, one of which with lyrics fitting the Komintern name and which are also funny.

While you might argue that it's not original, as they borrow from other sounds and simply put them in one song, I can say there's more to it than that. First of all, the merging is done very well in a way that does not only not sound forced, it actually sounds as if it is supposed to be that way. Second, there is more than just bringing several styles together. Yes, they borrow from several other genres, but they take what they feel needed and create a new sound using those ingredients and make up a special odd sound, since they add their own quirky style to it.

You might argue that this band wanted to include too much and did not focus enough on a particular style and path. But then you are ignoring that it is what they set out to do from the beginning, fuse several styles, merge between what you might not normally associate with one another. Create a new sound that is made up from the merging of sounds. If this notion sounds bad to you, then you should avoid this. If you like eclectic (both in general in an album and within one track), then you should try this one. Sadly finding this will prove to be a daunting task as it is only available in used vinyl record shops and sadly it has not been reissued.

This album should appeal to people who like what I refer to as the Samla Mammas Manna School (humouristic style with a general cheerful mood in the music. There are more attributes, but those are the ones who appear in this album); fusion fans; people who like quirkiness and oddities fitting the avant-garde tag; and people who like a mélange of styles (that is done in a good way).

4 stars for a too short but with great content album.

avestin | 4/5 |

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