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Embryo - Embryo's Reise CD (album) cover




Jazz Rock/Fusion

4.14 | 54 ratings

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Sean Trane
Special Collaborator
Prog Folk
4 stars 4.5 stars really!!

This double album is certainly one of the best attempts to fuse progressive-type rock with ethnic/world music and few have succeeded as well as Embryo's Reise (voyage). Indeed around the departure of the ever-important Roman Bunka from the group, plans had been made to travel from Istanbul to Pakistan and Nepal, while recording their musical encounters with the indigenes found on their paths. The album is not just that, there are also tracks coming from left, right & centre, but overall, that's a fair description of the album's content. Among Embryo's latest recruits were guitarist Drexler (ex-Out Of Focus) and wind player Josch (ex-Missus Beastly) whom were part of the trip. The gatefold vinyl comes with a deliciously illustrated booklet detailing their trip in both German and English texts. I hear the Cd version has that too, but I doubt of the legibility of the format.

Where this album is an important one for progheads is that the track list is abounding of jams between the Embryo members and the local musicians, sometimes resulting to some absolutely stunning jams. Difficult to start describing these jams, but most had a structure for conventional entendre (no free form or voluntarily dissonant). The group was giving improvised multimedia concerts along the way, some including stunning live performance paintings. In either case, I'm sure they brought back hundreds of hours of jams and gave us a small selection here. Some of these jams are actually really successful, mixing perfectly the European (often electric) rock musicians and the often-acoustic local musicians (such as the opening Road To Asia), while others are more ethnic players playing their stuff while Europeans are waiting for a chance to hop on boards. On the other hand there are some openly and wildly saturated guitar rock pieces.

Symbolic of the 70's hippy dream, this road is now highly unlikely to all western or eastern youth as international conflicts have long rendered the road impossible to accomplish safely nowadays. A real must and not only in Embryo's discography.

Sean Trane | 4/5 |


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