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Embryo - Steig Aus [also released as: This Is Embryo] CD (album) cover




Jazz Rock/Fusion

3.80 | 80 ratings

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Prog Reviewer
2 stars Endless Jamming with Some Points of Interest

I picked up this Embryo album, STEIG AUS, as I had heard that it was a mixture of world music and jazz fusion. While bandleader Christian Burchard would go on to explore world influences to a much larger extent later in his career, there is very little of it here. What we get instead is solid jazz-fusion jamming with a Krautrock sense of freedom. That is, there is no need for melodic theme, plenty of repetition, but also some nice exploration of timbre and raw sound.

The first track, Radio Marrakesh / Orient Express starts with some nice ethnic flavors before settling back into a Santana-esque groove. Unfortunately, no one in this band has the lyric solo presence of a Carlos. The jamming is well performed but very meandering and in the end directionless. Though there is nothing wrong with the music, this is not music that demands a lot of attention. Live, this could have been great fun, as the rhythm moves and the sounds are nice and spacey, and I can see the crowd just dancing away. As a prog fan, there's not much to sink my teeth into. Later songs continue in the same vein, but without the ethnic influences.

The album gets special mention for one of the most incomprehensible covers, consisting of a doll arm and what appears to be a modern black metal singer's head popping out of an amplifier. The name of the group and album are also spray-painted on the amp. Given that the music is 70's groove-jazz, this image is completely baffling. In the words of Frank Zappa, "Now that's Cheepnis."

I actually do enjoy this album and it's nice background music for rides in the car or collapsing after a day of work. I rate it between 2 and 3 stars but for prog fans looking for something with a little more substance, I think I have to give a 2.

Negoba | 2/5 |


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