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Frogg Cafe - Bateless Edge CD (album) cover


Frogg Cafe


Jazz Rock/Fusion

3.92 | 201 ratings

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Mellotron Storm
Prog Reviewer
5 stars This is one of those reviews that won't justify the music one iota, but here goes. This latest album from FROGG CAFE was an automatic buy for me after getting so much enjoyment from both "Creatures" and "Fortunate Observer Of Time" over the years. I just wasn't prepared for what they created here. At over 77 minutes i'd usually complain about that ,but not when every song is so good. They've really changed and added to menue here at the cafe, sure we get the things we love about this band, but they've really brought in some new flavours including a dark, avant mood at times. Lots and lots of guests as well to fill out the sound. Frank Camiola who wasn't on the last album but who's been on all the other studio albums is back.

"Terra Sancta" is dedicated to the children who lost parents on 9/11. It opens with Indian slide guitar. We also get tabla in this track. It kicks in with horns around a minute. Vibes too. How good does this sound ! The instrumental section stops as thunder and rain arrives. Vocals follow with these words "Any other day a snack in your lunch and a kiss from mom sends you on your way. Not this day." Nice guitar 5 1/2 minutes in. A change a minute later as the bass becomes prominant and the piano and guitar play over top.This is great ! Horns 11 minutes in then the guitar lights it up. Vocals are back. "Move Over I'm Driving" written by Nick Lieto has this thought behind the title."It's not really fair that you can't drive the taxi yourself once you flag it down". It's jazzy to start out with horns and violin. Bass and drums add some depth. It settles before 4 minutes as sax plays over top. Violin is back around 6 minutes,guitar too. "Pasta Fazeuhl" ends with "zeuhl" in the title you may have noticed. The song began it's life after Frank saw MAGMA play at NearFest in 2003. "It's not so much in the style of MAGMA per se, but rather in the spirit and energy that the band exudes, and it's a tribute of sorts, Frogg style". The song builds until it kicks in after a minute. Vibes after 2 1/2 minutes. A calm follows then things get a little Avant-garde. Another calm after 4 1/2 minutes as cello enters in then it builds. Check it out 7 1/2 minutes. Nasty ! Strings only before 9 minutes then it kicks back in after 10 minutes. Killer track. "Under Wuhu Son" is divided into 3 sections. This song is based on a book and related to Andew (I beleive) who with his wife had a four year struggle to adopt their daughter from China. First up is "In The Bright Light" which opens with intricate sounds. A gorgeous intro but I like when it turns darker and heavier 2 minutes in.Vocals follow as it settles. Man this is good. Love his vocals. It kicks in before 4 minutes. So good after 5 minutes both lyrically and instrumentally. Emotion. The guitar 6 minutes in is a nice touch. Horns and vibes after 7 minutes.

"Left For Dead" opens with horns blasting with a heavy rhythm section joining in. Too much ! It settles before 3 minutes. Nice. Chunky bass as it builds. Thunder and rain end it. "Brace Against The Fall" is the final section. A good rhythm section with horns eventually leads.The vocals before 1 1/2 minutes are again so good from Nick. They stop after 3 minutes as horns lead. The guitar before 4 1/2 minutes is sublime. Horns and vibes a minute later. Amazing ! "From The Fence" settles with vocals before a minute. It's so uplifting. Check out the thoughtful lyrics too. I just get lost in this one. "Belgium Boogie Board" is the closing 10 1/2 minute instrumental. It's experimental to start then the strings and horns rip this mother up. Drums join in and vibes. It turns dark with violin and piano after 2 minutes. Intense. A good rhythm follows then it settles after 4 minutes as sounds come and go. It turns dark before 7 minutes.This is so good. It's like Chamber music here. It picks back up before 9 minutes. I like the last gasp of music here after the song has already ended. Like a monster not willing to die.

Without a doubt this will be right at the top of my list for best 2010 release. This must be heard to be believed.

Mellotron Storm | 5/5 |


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