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Frogg Cafe - The Safenzee Diaries CD (album) cover

THE SAFENZEE DIARIES

Frogg Cafe

 

Jazz Rock/Fusion

3.71 | 15 ratings

From Progarchives.com, the ultimate progressive rock music website

Garion81
Special Collaborator
Honorary Collaborator
4 stars All that is mising is you

In my review of Noodles by Frogg Caffe I said there are far better Frogg Cafe albums and this is most assuredly one of them. When I met them after their performance at Calprog 2007 Andrew Sussman put this in my hand after I purchased Noodles and said I think you will like this one much better. He was correct. This is as fine a live offering as I have heard in recent years. Some tracks were recorded live in the studio and others at various concerts such as Nearfest 2005 and the New Jersey Proghouse in 2004.

Both CDs have a great mixture of songs from their three studio releases, 2 from each, as well as one from Noodles Tagliarini but what really makes this package special is it also contains 7 previously unreleased songs and I challenge you to tell me without looking which are from albums and which are previously unreleased. The music is what you expect from Frogg Cafe; great Jazz parts in the mold of Miles Davis, heavily sprinkled with Frank Zappa with a splash of Mahavishnu and Return to Forever, several tablespoons of Umphreys McGee and pinch of avant-gard. Some of the better tracks are Gagutz, Space Dust, Candy Corn, Creatures , Samll Chuwawa, Fat Guys in Shorts (they have been to too many prog fests), Abyss of Dissension heck there isn't a bad track on here.

As for the players these guys are stellar. Almost all the members have degrees or studied music at College and it shows. Bill Ayasse will invoke memories of Jean Luc-Ponty and Jerry Goodman on his violin. Andrew Sussman is a great fusion style bass player and decent vocalist as well, Steve Uh is a talented yet undersated guitarist who shines in may of these tracks. James Guarnieri is a great drummer in every style they perform and Nick Lieto is versatile guy who handles various brass as well as keyboards. At any given concert they may enlist the services of others on various horns, marima and other assorted instruments.

I am very pleased with this album and I am hard pressed to think of better live one released in the last ten years. The song selection and mastering is perfect. If you are fan of any of the influences I mentioned then get this album you won't be disappointed. 4.5 stars

Garion81 | 4/5 |

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