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Moving Gelatine Plates - Moving Gelatine Plates CD (album) cover


Moving Gelatine Plates


Canterbury Scene

4.15 | 94 ratings

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4 stars Moving Gelatine Plates are a Canterbury group from France. Unlike RPI for example, where you have very different sounding bands together because they come from the same country, Canterbury was first and foremost a style. Not only did most of the musicians involved in that scene not come from Canterbury, but some of the best music from the scene was made by non-UK groups. Besides MGP, there was Supersister(Holland), Cos (Belgium) and Picchio Dal Pozzo(Italy). The American group The Muffins are usually regarded as being Canterbury as well.

What MGP has in common with most Canterbury bands is an eclectic jazz-rock sound with a sense of humour. They also use the typical fuzz and wah-wah on the guitars and keyboards. In some ways, this album is closer to the sound of Supersister than to the UK bands. Maurice Hemlinger does a great job of switching between organ, flute, sax and trumpet. Impressive. The other three members play the usual guitars, bass and drums. Both the bassist and guitar player sing.

"London Cab" starts things off with odd spacey noises. Some flute starts playing before the rest of the band comes in. They jam away for awhile with some sax soloing. The music stops and some phased drumming before other instruments join in and the tempo increses. A guitar solo follows. After 5 minutes some more sax soloing and you hear a sped-up 'chipmunk' voice recite the lyrics to the song "Three Blind Mice". An unaltered voice is also talking; I like the line "she cut off her tail with a carving knife!" Then it immediately goes into a marching beat, followed by a very early '70s hard rock riff with some more vocals. Ends very jazzy.

"X-25" begins sounding like the later French group Etron Fou Leloublan. Then it gets very Canterbury sounding. At the end it switches to a polka-style and an announcement on megaphone. Nice song but too short. "Gelatine" is probably the best song on the album. Love the organ at the beginning. Some harmonized singing, love what the drummer is doing with the snare drum here. Later a very quiet bass solo with no other instruments. This song changes quite a bit. I like the upbeat section they go into halfway with some sax soloing. The sax and guitar play in unison at times. Later on a trumpet solo. Great drumming near the end.

The 15-minute "Last Song" is not actually the last song (more of that Canterbury humour). It starts off with some guitar harmonics before the rest of the bnad comes in. They waste no time jamming away and changing to different sections. Lots of soloing from sax and guitar in this track. At one point there is lots of start/stop playing before a very, very long drum solo. A little too long, really. Eventually other instruments come in and it switches to a more laid- back part. Later on some harmony singing. Goes into a riff briefly near the end. Great organ playing until it goes jazzy and ends with more guitar harmonics. "Memories" has two acoustic guitars; one playing in a Spanish/classical style. Then some flute. A little bit of bass buried in the mix. The weakest song but a nice way to end the album.

Because they were from France and didn't get a lot of promotion from their record label, these guys slipped into obscurity, many missing out on a chance to hear their albums. In a perfect world, this group and album would be much more popular. The next album will be even better, but it too will not get much promotion. If you are really into the UK Canterbury groups, you should have no problem getting into MGP. A really good debut album. This gets 3.5 but I'll round it up to 4 stars.

zravkapt | 4/5 |


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