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Offering - Offering Part I / Part II CD (album) cover

OFFERING PART I / PART II

Offering

 

Zeuhl

3.91 | 18 ratings

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Neil C
3 stars This album will appeal to those who like the more extreme solo vocalising side of Magma - often what is missing are the really killer melodies, chord progressions, grooves and instrumental interplay. In addition the pieces on this album stay in one place with a kind of minimalist aesthetic, rather than change direction like Magma music does. This is very much a chamber music, rather than symphonic, project and to enjoy it you have to afford leader Christian Vander a little more license for indulgence especially on the vocal front. The album will probably appeal mainly to those who enjoy the music of Magma but many Magma fans may find it problematic.

Here are the tracks:

The first half of the album is darker with more meandering melodies (perhaps even more improvisational):

Offering (Part 1): Some free and intense vocalising rising to a climax and becoming sweeter as the piece continues. It sets the scene but is not of great interest in and of itself - ** stars

Earth: Intense vocals and fantastic Magma-like groove on the plus side but on the negative side not much thematic or harmonic (or rhythmic for that matter) development... It's all about the groove - ***1/2 stars

Joia: a two chord vamp - quite hypnotic with some decidedly strange and indulgent vocalising. It builds a little as it goes on but is a very long track which ultimately outstays its welcome - ** stars

The second half of the album is lighter, more melodic and more concise:

C'est Pour Nous: A real feel-good track - tight arrangement with excellent brass, latin style percussion and precise interlocking virtuoso scat style vocals. Very enjoyable - **** stars

Love in the Darkness: takes the melodic and rhythmic essence of 'Love in the Darkness' from Merci (by Magma) and transforms it from a semi-Euro disco track to something with a great deal of sophistication and sensitivity. It is light, perhaps 'slight' in a way (and the English vocals do not contribute to any sense of profundity) but it does make for a very satisfying listen - **** stars

Tilim M'Dohm: lively female unison scat vocals with piano and light percussion. Very syncopated, very light, deft, beautiful and complex - **** stars

Mazur Kujiawiak Oberek: a piece for solo piano with a strange East European sounding modality. The opening is a strident kind of waltz but then the piece shifts into a very beautiful semi-impressionistic second section which is reminiscent of the Catalonian composer Mompou - **** stars

Solitude: gentle, lyrical and beautiful - **** stars

gma M Mlimh Gngeh: quite an impromptu way to end the album with what seems to be (off mic) chit chat etc.... But nevertheless quite pleasant - *** stars

Neil C | 3/5 |

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