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Don Caballero - Don Caballero 2 CD (album) cover

DON CABALLERO 2

Don Caballero

 

Post Rock/Math rock

3.95 | 91 ratings

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Cesar Inca
Special Collaborator
Honorary Collaborator
5 stars Some reviewers have already stated that "2" is Don caballero's apex, and I must start my review by admitting my absolute agreement with this indication. I've only gottene to know them recently and I haven't heard their entire discography, but of this I am certain: this is my absolute fave from the bunch of their albums that I own. Don Caballero is a band that robustly creates a fusion of the old-school art-rock and the experimental side of metallic rock. Influences from modern King Crimson, early Primus are fluidly combined with such diverse elements as the acid potential of artsy metal, jazz-rock with extra punch, psychedelia, and even textures of the rougher side of post- rock. The role of founding member Damon Che is crucial, since his drumming style allows him to use his instrument as a lead item more recurrently than any of the two guitarists. These guys, while not stopping themselves from soloing in places, mostly focus on riffs, counterpoints and ambiences. Meanwhile, bass player Matt Jencik assumes the role of filling those spaces left empty by Che when he concentrates on his peculiar percussive adornments. 'Stupid Puma', the album's opener, can be regarded as a Don Caballero trademark piece: high-spirited moods and weird neurosis married within the confines of a cohesive structure in which the metallic sounds shine with flying colors. This is a very good sample of what math-rock is all about. 'Please Tokio, Please THIS IS TOKIO' occupies an 11-minute span, a space that the musicians use to display an exciting combination of prog, psychedelia and metal. The sonic storm is actually freer in form when compared to the former track, but you can still notice a clear sense of structure during the number's development. For instance, the languid passages carry implicitly some of the burden left by the heavier ones. The last minutes consist of a dual guitar soundscape seasoned with what seems to be a series of concrete percussions: an industrial thing, I suppose. 'P,P,P,antless' brings back teh full frontal math-rock stuff: an angular dissonant piece that, oddly enough, turns out to be quite catchy. 'Repeat Defender' is another ambitious number, a bit shorter than 'Please Tokio.' but with a more pronunced sense of contrast between the aggressive complex sections and the more subtle ones. 'Dick Suffers is Furious with You' is yet another long track, akin to the sophistication-driven ideology of prog: this time the predominant ambiences are built with psychedelic flows in the vein of post-rock. Che's drumming, as usual, keeps thing quite intense, indulging itself in the exploration of jazzy vibes not unlike BLS or Attention Deficit. Things get more ethereal with 'Cold Knees (in April)', a captivating experimentof digital effects performed on prepared guitar - courtesy of Mike Banfield. 'Cold Knees' can be enjoyed as a prelude to 'Rollerblade Success Story', a piece that sort of brings back the overall mood of tracks 1 and 3: the hearder sections are arguably the most metallic sections in the album. The last 10 minutes are filled by the monster piece 'No One Gives a Hoot about FAUX-ASS Nonsense', which resumes the more solid ambitions of tracks 2 and 4, enhancing the Crimsonian factor and refining the set of contrasts between the various sections. Its inherent tension leads to overt density when the use of repetitive riffs gets effectively overwhelming - perhaps a manifesto of the industrial core of our modern world. With this excellent closure end this fabulous second Don Caballero album. I honestly regard it as a masterpiece of our modern times' experimental rock - an item for all adventurous progheads with a special taste for the weirdest side of aggressive art-rock.
Cesar Inca | 5/5 |

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