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Last Exit - Iron Path CD (album) cover


Last Exit



3.69 | 7 ratings

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Mellotron Storm
Prog Reviewer
3 stars I guess you could file this under "just not my thing" I suppose. According to the bio these four guys are Free Jazz musicians who all had ties to NYC's 1980's Punk Jazz scene. This is supposed to be the tamest of all their albums as they can be very loud and noisy, especially their live releases. I have to say that Free jazz is one of my least favourite sub-genres but I thought I'd give this a shot. It's filed under Free Jazz and Experimental Jazz by many and I like it being under Avant here at PA. A four piece with some insane sax provided by German Peter Brotzmann plus we get bassist Bill Laswell, drummer Ronald Shannon Jackson and guitarist Sonny Sharrock.

"Prayer" opens with atmosphere that builds as different sounds come and go and it's quite haunting. It kicks in at a minute with aggressive drumming with guitar over top. Soon it's drums only then the sax jumps in around 2 minutes. The guitar is back along with some vocal expressions. The drums are relentless. Nice bass after 3 minutes as dissonant sax joins in. The guitar is back late in this intense opener. "Iron Path" has picked guitar and percussion to start, no real melody along with atmosphere. That changes before 3 minutes with pulsating sounds, picked guitar and more. Not big on this one.

"The Black Bat(For Aki Ikuta)" has a steady beat as the guitar eventually joins in. Sax to the fore around 3 minutes and it will get dissonant. "Marked For Death" is tamer with drums being the focus along with atmosphere. That changes when the sax arrives after a minute(haha). "The Fire Drum" is my favourite. Rumbling drums and clashing cymbals to start and I really like this when that beat arrives after a minute as the bass and guitar join in. The guitar will come and go then sax arrives after 2 1/2 minutes then more guitar. Sax is back before 3 1/2 minutes.

"Detonator" has a somewhat heavy sound to it. It turns experimental quickly though with drums and more. Some wild sax after a minute and it will come and go. "Sad Dancer" is melodic and short at under 2 minutes. Bass and guitar lead the way, not bad at all. "Cut And Run" has rumbling drums with guitar over top then the sax replaces the guitar as they trade off. I like this one.

"Eye For An Eye" opens with feedback that pulses kind of like "This Is Now" before the sax drones. Back to the pulses as contrasts continue until sax only lets it rip in a disconcerting manner then back to the contrasts. "Devil's Rain" ends it and I'd rate this as my second favourite. A fairly melodic drum driven start with dissonant sax coming and going. The sax gets pretty crazy late.

In my world a 3 star album but many seem to love it so you be the judge.

Mellotron Storm | 3/5 |


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