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Billy Cobham - Total Eclipse CD (album) cover

TOTAL ECLIPSE

Billy Cobham

 

Jazz Rock/Fusion

3.74 | 54 ratings

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sgtpepper
4 stars Even more ambitious than the previous first two records and almost as good in execution as the debut album, on Total Eclipse, maturity is nice mixed with young explosiveness and energy. This record offers a right mixture of complexity, player dexterity, compositional quality and side players involvement.

The first epic track is a modular suite and ranges from mellow passages to drum solo and torrid fusion jam. The beginning has a progressive rock driven pattern but the drumming intensity is clearly a trademark of Cobham ;) Everybody wakes up to these devilish guitar and drum interplay followed by piano/brass loaded intermezzos. Second Phase reliefs the tension with soft piano licks and transforms into a George-Duke-like funky territory. In the style krieg, the familiar fusion motive takes over and hellish tempo welcomes the listener. A fabulous composition!

"Lunarputians" reminds me of Eleventh House - it is a well coloured accessible energetic short track.

"Total Eclipse" meanders between funky and fusion side of things. Of note is jazzy piano stylistically closer to traditional bop than funk - a great contribution by Milcho Leviev. John Abercrombie tasteful play comes into spotlight by the end of the track.

"Bandits" is noteworthy because of drum and bass duo, the track is clearly not here to impress compositionally but to show the instrumental capabilities of the rhythm section.

Another killer drum pattern comes in "Sea of tranquility" - sounds calm at first listen but it keeps being busy. The brass players make a great job here with plethora of instruments - flugelhorn, saxophone, trumpets, etc. This track continues being intensive despite its name and laid-back atmosphere.

The last track gives way to a long drummer's solo and unpretentious reflection of the piano player.

Only slightly below the first Cobham's record and still 4.5 stars!

sgtpepper | 4/5 |

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