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Upsilon Acrux - Last Train Out CD (album) cover

LAST TRAIN OUT

Upsilon Acrux

 

RIO/Avant-Prog

3.00 | 1 ratings

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Atavachron
Special Collaborator
Honorary Collaborator
3 stars There is little question about one thing: this album is a lot of fun. Whether you dig 'avant-garde' rock or not, Upsilon Acrux's Last Train Out is a blast. In fact as genres go, this one reminds more of Tortoise on good cocaine with Don Cab math brutalities than it does SGM or Daniel Denis. Constant change is the order here with staunch forward movement. Where it takes us at any given moment is anyone's guess. That's not to say UA's music is improvised. No, I see too much schema, too much deliberate thought for it to be simply freeform consciousness. However, it is spontaneous, and the dangers involved in such a venture are always present. But drummer Jesse Klecker and alternating guitar/bass teams including Cameron Presley and Paul Lai look that challenge straight in the face and never flinch, giving braver progheads something to smile about and offering catcallers who would surely point to this appalling waste of plastic as the very reason they avoid Avant prog a trophy of ill repute.

And I really can't blame them. The material here is challenging, or perhaps I should say a challenge insofar as it's as tedious to hear as it likely was to make. But figure all those Merzbow downloads or Univers Zero rips will come as handy preparation if you're a devoted & adventurous prog listener and if you're ready, Acrux could be a reasonable gateway drug to the more distant and absurd end of the progressive landscape. 'The Wack Art Deception' doesn't help matters though, opening on a slurry of frenzied stranglings. But 'Propeller' offers some metered rhythm for which we're grateful. This pattern of brazen invention saved suddenly by more traditional post-rock repeats throughout the 11-cut studio release as with 'AWOL', 'Plate Tectonics', and the electrical spiders of '45 Seconds(beez kneez)'. Industrial tours and number crunching for 6-minute 'Last Song', house beats of 'Intronics', and quiet complexities in 'If Only the Freight Train Could Join the Band', 'Twice the Tweak' and the closing number.

This album is raw. It's intense, and it's brave as hell. Either avoid it at all costs or find it used and add it to your "Maybe-I'll-listen-to-these-guys-someday" pile. And if you're into them already, I'd imagine this one should please thoroughly.

Atavachron | 3/5 |

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