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The Tea Club - Rabbit CD (album) cover

RABBIT

The Tea Club

 

Crossover Prog

3.95 | 88 ratings

From Progarchives.com, the ultimate progressive rock music website

BrufordFreak
5 stars This one came as real surprise--very cool sound feeling somewhere between OCEANSIZE, RADIOHEAD, BIG BIG TRAIN, MOON SAFARI and even some TOBY DRIVER. The weave of instruments is so well performed that rarely does any one instrument really stand out, yet all are of top caliber. But it is the vocal performances, IMO, that deserve special mention: so diverse, emotional and well-executed. The first three songs are acceptable rockers, but is with "Royal Oil Can" that something extraordinary leaps out at me. As a matter of fact, songs 4 through 11, minus #10, "Tumbleweeds" (beautiful yet lacking something...), are each and all beautiful, often masterful.

"Royal Oil Can" (9/10) is, IMHO, more beautiful than anything by MOON SAFARI--and powerful when the bass and toms enter at the 2:55 mark. The production is so clear and balanced, the songwriting and performance so mature and controlled.

"Out of the Oceans" (8/10) starts with a kind of BILLY JOEL meets OCEANSIZE feel and sound. At 1:50 the pace changes and the vocals get the underwater treatment. The organ that joins at 2:45 is very cool. The OCEANSIZE vibe is definitely strong in this one. The delicate section with almost a cappella vocal beginning at 4:10 mark is stunningly emotional and gorgeous. This is where it really begins to sound like a TOBY DRIVER performance--especially as it builds to the tortured singing after the 6:10 mark. Great song.

"He Is Like a Spider" (8/10) sounds very RADIOHEAD-like. The opening guitar and vocal work is quite ear-catching. The second section of the song kind of gets lost before it reassembles into another gorgeous section with harmonizing vocals resembling MOON SAFARI or BIG BIG TRAIN. Unfortunately, it then disassembles again into a reprise of the awkward second section to close.

"Nuclear Density Guage" (9/10) has a very space/psychedlic beginning--even through the pretty vocals over slow discordant guitar strums. Then, suddenly, it kind of picks up into an energized section sounding much like THE MARS VOLTA. Awesome guitar sounds. I love the unusual (ZAPPA-like?) singing (ranting) that begins 3:45 mark and the chorus that closes it. Strange fade out.

"Astro" (8/10) begins very melodically with all instruments weaving together in gorgeous support so much like BIG BIG TRAIN. A few divergences into pure RADIOHEAD land work well. And the DAVE GREGORY imitation guitar soloing here sounds even better than on "The Underfall Yard." Awesome segue back into vocals at 6:25! Then there is a very delicate "Cinema Show" section beginning at 7:25. Wonderful vocal and drum/cymbal work. Again, remarkable collective weave of instrumental performances to support the vocals.

I look forward to much more from this band. I so enjoy the extraordinarily selfless, 'group' mentality they convey so well (whether intentional or no) in their beautiful songscapes. Well done, TEA CLUB!

Added 10/9/11: I wish to update and upgrade my review of this album for, during the nine months since 2010 ended, this is one of only two albums that I keep going back to over and over the other is BROTHER APE's "A Rare Moment of Insight"), which feels fresh, interesting, and invigorating. The main point is, I keep wanting to come back to it, which, in my mind, means this is a keeper, a classic, a masterpiece. Again, well done, Tea Club! Keep on doin'!

BrufordFreak | 5/5 |

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