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NeBeLNeST - NoVa eXPReSS  CD (album) cover





4.12 | 67 ratings

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4 stars I seriously doubt anyone who was blown away by their 1999 debut would be surprised they'd end up on Cuneiform Records. After all that label has released its share of RIO and avant prog type of releases since the beginning, around 1984, and of course France's Nebelnest (or their insistence of capitalizing all the consonants, NeBeLNeST) totally fits the bill of Cuneiform like a glove. And so was the label of their last two albums, this one, and Zepto. Nova Express (I won't bother with those capitalizations again) is their second one, some three years after their debut, and what a great followup it is! More of that weird Crimson/Anekdoten style, the more extreme in, the Magma influences I guess comes more from the heavily fuzzed bass of Gregory Tejedor in the style of Jannick Top or Bernard Paganotti. Brother Oliver Tejedor gives us synth and Mellotron (both sampled and real) and on the title track he goes so tron overboard on one section that the Planet Mellotron website called it "tron torture". This music isn't easy. Every now and then the band sounds a bit normal, this is the part, I guess, where strangely, the Ozric Tentacles comparison arise (although I fail to notice any Ozric comparisons), it's back to that chaotic approach real fast. Traditional song structure and melody are forsaken, even King Crimson would diverge with someone a bit more conventional, but not Nebelnest, but then not many of these RIO acts. Because of that, it's little wonder RIO will never be without their detractors, many will accuse these groups of testing the boundaries, being "weird for weird's sake". So obviously I won't recommend those to those who have an aversion to RIO, but I'd say the same of Henry Cow or Univers Zero. But I do get with what RIO is about and Nebelnest is certainly a great example. I've seen comparisons to Guapo, as they take to the heavier end of RIO/avant prog, although Guapo is frequently even more metal, although there is a metal influence in Nebelnest. There are fewer songs on this CD, only five, but they are longer, but to be honest, there isn't much of a difference in that three year gap. If you like this style, I can heartily recommend this.
Progfan97402 | 4/5 |


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