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Kaukasus - I CD (album) cover




Crossover Prog

3.92 | 113 ratings

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Mellotron Storm
Prog Reviewer
5 stars This band is a trio and somewhat of a supergroup you could say with Norway's Rhys Marsh(solo) and Ketil Einarsen(JAGA JAZZIST) being joined by Sweden's Mattias Olsson(ANGLAGARD). Each member plays many instruments on this recording. I enjoyed tszirmay's review on this one because I also was perplexed when I first heard it with those commerical sounding vocal-led passages combined with those experimental soundscapes. An odd mixture but man once I figured it out I was blown away by this. They came into these recording sessions with the idea of doing a Krautrock album but they let nature take it's course and the finished result has me giving this 4.5 stars but rounding up. Marsh(guitar/vocals) and Olsson(drums) both add mellotron to this while Marsh also adds some Fender Rhodes. They both add a lot more though while Einarsen plays flute, electric piano, synths and more. Rhys sounds like David Sylvian at times to my surprise, I really enjoyed his vocal work here much more than on his solo stuff.

"The Ending Of The Open Sky" opens with flute and sparse sounds before the drums kick in and take over. Vocals follow but then they stop before 2 1/2 minutes as it turns heavy. Back to that drum pattern again with flute then the vocals return after 3 minutes. There's an Eastern vibe here as well. Urgent sounding vocals after 4 minutes with a heavy and dark atmosphere. Nice. "Lift The Memory" has these random drum patterns to start before it kicks into gear. Nice drum work here and the vocals arrive after a minute as it settles back. A calm 2 1/2 minutes in as drums, piano and atmosphere standout. The vocals return quickly though then it turns fuller once again. Contrasts will continue. Dual spoken words follow as the drums continue in another calm section. The drums and vocals stop as the atmosphere continues. An Eastern vibe arrives followed by a beat then it picks up around the 6 minute mark. That full sound with vocals is back 7 minutes in then a calm ends it. "In The Stillness Of Time" has this groovy almost jazzy feel to it. Vocals lead the way as light drums, piano and bass support. Things turn more passionate and fuller after 3 minutes but that lasts only about a minute then it calms right down to an even more relaxed soundscape with electronics to end it as it blends into "Starlit Motion". This is such a mesmerizing track as sounds pulse and echo the rest of the way. Incredible!

"Reptilian" is such an interesting song with the atmosphere and World-music feel to start. Vibes join in then a full sound as vocals follow. Vocals do stop as it becomes more powerful after 2 minutes. Check out the drum work. Great sound here. The organ helps out as voices whisper in the background and it turns atmospheric. Mellotron 4 minutes in as it calms right down briefly before kicking in with mellotron and drumming leading the way. Themes are repeated. I like the vocal melodies before 6 1/2 minutes then a spacey calm ends it. "The Witness" is the one song that really reminds me of David Sylvian, especially his "Secrets Of The Beehive" recording. Picked guitar almost echoes as the flute joins in. Beautiful melancholy as the vocals join in, love the atmosphere here. Just a gorgeous tune that blends into "The Skies Give Meaning". Drums and lots of atmosphere early on and it's so good. Lots of emotion. The vocals cry out before 4 minutes as the guitar grinds it out with passion. My God! So much tension here but then it finally breaks as spoken words arrive.

Once I figured this album out(yeah okay) it has blown me away. I'm really looking forward to what this band has up it's sleeves next. Innovation is the word.

Mellotron Storm | 5/5 |


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