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Art Zoyd - Marathonnerre II  CD (album) cover

MARATHONNERRE II

Art Zoyd

 

RIO/Avant-Prog

3.21 | 15 ratings

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Syzygy
Special Collaborator
Honorary Collaborator
3 stars Originally released as one half of a double set with Marathonnerre I, this is a studio recording of pieces performed as part of a continuous 12 hour performance event. This is quite different to the Art Zoyd of old; the stripped down 3 piece line up relies heavily on electronics, and the distinctive string and horn parts are largely absent. The piano and percussion still provide the main rhythmic impetus, however, and the Bartok/Stravinsky influences are still present and correct, although there's also an element of Steve Reich style minimalism in this incarnation of the group.

Although the original performances may have been good, most of this album is rather flat and often feels lifeless. The best tracks are those which sound most like the earlier version of the band - AZPP/Mariee a la Nuit has a sense of urgency and musical development that is missing from too much of this album. Elsewhere the album is stronger on atmosphere than on content - the sound is often extremely beguiling, but it doesn't necessarily stand up to close or repeated listening.

Newcomers to Art Zoyd would be better off starting with Phase IV or Generation Sans Futur. Established RIO fans will find things to enjoy on this album, but it's something of a let down compared to their earlier work.

Syzygy | 3/5 |

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