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U.S. Maple - Purple On Time CD (album) cover


U.S. Maple



4.00 | 1 ratings

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4 stars After 'Acre Thrills' the bands drummer Pat Samson left the band and Adam Vida joined in his place. If I hadn't known it, I wouldn't have noticed it, because Adam seemed to embrace Pat's a-rhythmic style perfectly. This album was recorded by multi-instrumentalist John McEntire and musician Jeremy Lemons, when all the band members took the producer duties. The soundworld is as 'produced' as it's in 'Acre Thrills'. Anyway bands is still very live sounding and no overdubs seemed not make. Wikipedia says this album has more conventional song structures, instrumentation and singing. Well, it's partly true, but this is really long away from conventional still. More about album describes Al's comment that 'band intend to make an album of love songs, but their intention went unnoticed'.

'My Lil Shocker' starts album with melodic, but weird guitar, soon there comes drums with straighforward beat and Al's typical asthmatic vocals. The beginning reminds little bit Trumans Water, but in the middle the song structure breaks in very typical U.S. Maple way. 'Sweet & Center' is the most melodic U.S. Maple song. But it also has a great complexity. 'Oh Below' takes the album into very weird blues direction. 'I'm Just a Bag' comes back to the earlier, quite chaotic direction. But in 'Dumb In the Wings' 'blues'-mood comes back. It starts with dark, strumling guitar, but intensity rises in the middle of the song. Vinyl b-side starts with 'Favors Are Weird' that is again more aggressive, earlier style song. But 'Whoopee Invander' brings back more serene, melodic line. Have to say it has also some Beefheart and is one the greatest songs in this album. Then comes almost conventional version of Dylan's 'Lay Lady Lay', but in very U.S. Maple way it sounds like it will break any moment. 'Tan Loves Blue' is also the highlights of this album in very great Beefheart-style rhythms and guitar- chords. 'Touch Me Judge' ends album really great way with it's strumming rhythm and melodic guitars. Also banjo in it sounds just fine.

This album is musically somewhere between 'Talker' and 'Acre Thrills'. With 'Long Hair In Three Stages' and 'Acre Thrills' it's the greatest albums of this very extraordinary band! But I can't say it's still a masterpiece, as also bands other albums it's still missing something, although also this album will open more with more listenings. After this album band went into hiatus and we haven't heard nothing about it. Really shame, there are not many these kind of bands in today.

Mortte | 4/5 |


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