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Sebkha Chott - Nagah Mahdi - Opuscrits En 48 Rouleaux CD (album) cover


Sebkha Chott


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5 stars Their music: what a blend! From metal, to jazz, opera, contemporary music, progressive rock, electronic, ambient, classic, gypsy, egyptian, african percussions, tap dance, ska, circus music, fusion, zeuhl... , Sebkha Chott mix so many styles with a perfect mastery of structured-craziness. On Nagah Mahdi, we can hear some Zappa, Magma, Fishbone, and Mr.Bungle influences. Call their music whatever you want to: "eclectic cosmic music", "auditory feast", or "Mekanik Metal Disco" (as the band says himself), but it is evident that they're awesome! Nagah Mahdi is really innovator; I felt over backward!

While you're listening to the album, you can imagine that you're in a musical theater. You penetrate their world named Ohreland. The atmosphere is festive, ironic, strange, loud, heavy, dramatic, oriental... but they particularly accent the delirious and original side of their songs. The brass instruments and the distortion guitars leads the sound, despite that their music is so diversified and the amount of intruments is really big. The 3 singers (2 men and 1 woman) contribute to create a crazy atmosphere, alternating between talked lyrics, cries, whispering, opera and going from French to English... Their lyrics are totally profound and lucid. The texts bring some strong reflections about life, even if it seems to have irony in them. The words are manipulated with a hand of genius!

Their album Nagah Mahdi is really surprising. You've propably never seen that: 48 tracks on one CD! All the tracks are really short; about 1:30 (one is 5 seconds long!!!), but there's a black sheep (a 12:50 long track). The 48 tracks of Nagah Mahdi are separated in 8 rouleaux (rolls). However, almost all the songs follow one after the other and cannot be separated. The musical pieces form a masterpiece that has to be considered as a whole, as a brilliant album in his entirety.

If you're adventurous, don't wait to get it, it's absolutely worthwhile! I give 4.5 stars for this jewel!

Report this review (#118904)
Posted Wednesday, April 18, 2007 | Review Permalink
Man With Hat
Jazz-Rock/Fusion/Canterbury Team
4 stars To describe this album briefly: A mind bending experience. However, it is much more then that. Sebkha Chott are a band that know no boundaries and are not afraid to combine musical styles that most people would feel shouldn't be together. SC mix jazz, metal, reggae, experiemental, folk, and outright strange sounds together into this musical feast. Be warned, this is not for the faint of heart.

For me, the album can be broken down into three sections: the first, dominated by a metal sound. The second, having more of a folky nature to the music, and lastly an experimental part. However, this are strictly generalizations. Each song (sometimes even the twelve second ones) twists and turns without hesitation. But the most reoccuring theme is based in those genres. Though, going through a song by song review would be quite tedious and would be terrible to read. Besides, this is one of those records that must be heard to fully appreciate the power of it. Another thing that need to be said about this band is that they have the ability to switch genres, speeds, themes, etc more smoothly and effortlessly than any other band I've heard. It is quite remarkable and really shows the skill and percision that these musicians have, even though there are times where the music can come off as "silly". There are few downsides to this album, with the most considerable is its length. Not really overlong, as there is not much here I would consider filler, just could become a little much as it takes it's forty-eight song journey. This is mostly a personal preferance thing however.

All in all, this is a fine album that any person with adventourous ears should hear. There is enough stuff going on to keep anyone busy for years, and thus there is always something new to discover. Recommended to fans of genre hopping bands (such as Mr. Bungle, Estradasphere, etc), or to anyone that is looking for something different and can embrace the weird with arms wide open. 4 stars.

Report this review (#127556)
Posted Wednesday, July 4, 2007 | Review Permalink
4 stars Into Sebkha Chott's unbalanced discography, "Nagha Mahdi..." is IMHO a real mindblowing RIO jewel... 48 short compositions running thru' your head at speed of light mixed on a non-stop "tour de force" full of incessant changes and brutal breaks based on a hard bass work, awsome percussions and crazy vocal sections that turns this almost conceptual piece into a wild and enjoyable journey.

Perhaps is not a RIO masterpiece, "Nagha Mahdi..." has to be one of the most powerful albums of the last two decades and a proof that avaant-garde genre is still very alive. Mayb is not an album for inexperienced ears, but I'm sure that a real RIO fan would enjoy this amazing album that reminds me the most crazy RIO pieces created by band such as Doctor Nerve, The Muffins on "185", Thinking Plague of Höyry-Kone... 4* to me...

Report this review (#1290610)
Posted Monday, October 13, 2014 | Review Permalink

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