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Senmuth - Aethiopia CD (album) cover




Experimental/Post Metal

3.00 | 3 ratings

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Special Collaborator
RIO/Avant/Zeuhl,Neo & Post/Math Teams
3 stars Ethiopia is south to Egypt and regardless the Rasta thing was part of the Egyptian kingdom and had some important roles in the ancient history. This is probably the reason why Senmuth dedicated one whole album of his ambient side to this land.

"Africa" is a complex track but it looks more like a patchwork. After few minutes the ethnic beginning is suddenly replaced by a techno interlude and then goes back to ethnic, but it takes some time to return back to the main theme. Not bad but it's leading nowhere and is missing that power of evocate images that was the best aspect of "Internal Images".

"Axum" is a famous Egyptian site in Ethiopia. Its Egyptian obelisk was stolen by the Italian fascists in the 30s, installed in Rome and given back only recently. Nice to know, maybe, but there's nothing of all that in this instrumental. Not much different from the previous track it has a melodic line with pitch changes that seem to be random, but at least there's some good guitar throughout the track.

"Eritrea" is a nation that's suffering of one of the many civil (and not) wars which are bleeding Africa since years. This track is mainly ethnic for what concerns the instruments, but the rhythm has an unexpected "reggae" flavour. Well, it's not reggae at all, but it's a bit unusual for Senmuth. Interesting even if there's almost no melodic line.

"Omo" is a short interlude but one of the best things of the album. Flute and percussions remind me to Pink Floyd's More. Unfortunately it's less than two minutes long.

The album's quality improves while proceeding. "Lalibela" ,too, is based mainly on flute and percussions. It's like a mix of Peter Gabriel and Vangelis (strange mix isn't it?). The first for the percussion, the second for the flute and the melody.

"Dungur" brings us back to the normal dark side of Senmuth. After a promising start it falls into the "leading nowhere problem" of the first two tracks. It's a pity because some goods are listenable here and there.

"Awasa" is a percussions based song on which the dark melody is not too invasive. It's one of the album's tracks that I like most.

"Tahka Mariam" was an ancient king (so says It has a strong tribal mood. Percussions, African choir and flute introduce a very interesting track with some newage flavour. It's one of the less dark things ever made by Senmuth even if the sound of his guitar is not properly "happy". if all the songs were like this, it could have been a five stars album.

"Nobatia" was an ancient Christian king (still from metal-archives). Also this track is largely dominated by the percussions, and like the previous one has a consistent structure even if we can't speak of melody.

"Tiya", the closer, is an average track still based on percussions and repetitive. Good for krautrockers.

If it wasn't for the false start of the first tracks this would have been a very good album. Hoping to find more "percussions and flute" stuff in the next albums I can't rate this one more than 3 stars.

octopus-4 | 3/5 |


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