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NeBeLNeST - NoVa eXPReSS  CD (album) cover





4.12 | 65 ratings

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Cesar Inca
Special Collaborator
Honorary Collaborator
5 stars NeBeLNeST's second effort 'Nova Express' is their best so far. The frenzy energy feels less massive here, but by no means it is subsided: the fact is, that same energy is spread out through the repertoire so in its own not-too-hideous way, NebeLNeST's fire keep itself burning at the same level of intense heat. The skills are also as excellent as they were shown in their debut album, yet it's fair to point out that the ensemble sound is more polished and the compositional work is more refined. You can tell that from the first two tracks (my two personal faves, by the way): the work on the complexity and changes of rhythm patterns and the interplay between guitar and synth, well sustained by a very focused drum/bass foundation, are symptoms that these guys spent more time devoted to the writing process. It doesn't mean that the jamming is significantly diminished, it's just that there is an increased sense of order working here, allowing the powerful sonic deliveries of NeBeLNeST to become more solidly "orchestrated". More than orchestrated, I would say, diverse. The openere 'Blackmail' kicks off with a pulsating electric piano-based motif, very Can-ish indeed. Once the opening motif is over, follows a series of dark passages delieverd with total energy, going from the most incendiary RIO a-la Present to the densest ambiences a-la "Starless and Bible Black"-era KC, with added touches of Ozric Tentacles-inspired electronic textures. A special mention goes to Gregory Tejedor, whose bass lines steal most of the limelight in many of the track's various sections. Its 9 1/2 minutes just pass by fluidly while the listener allows himself to become mesmerized by the ordained sonic magma that surrounds him across the air. The more concise 'Stimpy Bar' focuses on disturbingly dissonant polyphonics on a mid-tempo pace. Olivier Tejedor's job is even more prominent, since he gets more space for some solos that rival with Malderez's ever-punchy guitar; Olivier also gets the chance to expand his efforts by adding some avant-garde jazz touches into the band's spectre (the latter factor reminds be a bit of "Udu Wudu"-era Magma). I find 'Redrum' and 'Cinema 1920' the most sinister numbers of the album, almost Gothic at times, always keeping that revived "Starless and Bible Black"-feel that the guys of NeBeLNeST undoubtedly worship. 'Redrum' comprises explosive build-ups to consecutive climaxes, the last one being a brief tribal closure.'Cinema 1920' is the least complex number in the album, but as I stated before, its compellingly sinister nature stops it from being unnoticed between the longer tracks. The closing namesake track is mainly an extended jam, a strong reminder of the dominating spirit of their debut: the ideas flow over a solid rhythmic dynamics that continuously feeds the guitar and keyboard inputs. Definitely, a track build on the spirit of teh debut album but delivered with the extra energy that is essential to the whole new album. The final section is epic, in a disturbing approach. A prog masterpiece of our times... from my current favourite prog act from France.
Cesar Inca | 5/5 |


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