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Onségen Ensemble - HottoïzzoH CD (album) cover


Onségen Ensemble

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Cesar Inca
Honorary Collaborator
4 stars HottoïzzoH" is Onségen Ensamble's EP for 2007. So far, this is the only format that they use for their studio efforts, since their previous relase is also an EP. Both items are donwloadable from the band's website. This one lasts less than 15 minutes!! Anyway, it is a repertoire of three very interesting tracks, mostly construed on the foundations of a crossover between modernized zheul (Happy Family, for instance), heavy prog and stoner-oriented jamming. The EP kicks off with the namesake track. As you can see somewhere on Youtube, this track really benefits from proper expansions on stage, but for this studio version, it is only less than 5 minutes long. This time restriction sure leads to a restriction regarding the development of the main theme's atmospheres, but make no mistake, this studio version is not bad at all. Indeed, it is a very good demostration of the clever way that the three musicians combine the muscular and the spacey in their jams: the guitar riffs and the rhythm duo's dynamics are matched in an awesome sonic marriage. The robust bass lines are conveniently emphasized in places, which makes it for the band's mst obvious link to the heritage of old-school Magma. The follower 'OUSÍA MI MOSA' strays from this psychedelic overall mood and goes for a folk-prog deviation of avant-prog, something like Hoyrey-Kone-meets-Pochakaite Malko. The clever use of exotic Eastern Europe cadences in the guitar leads and female vocal harmonies feels solidly placed within the pounding, complex rhythmic structure. the EP's highlight is the closure 'VTG', which is pure heavy prog luxury. This track retakes the full frontal energy of the opening number and takes it to a more agile stage, as well as a more elaborated dexterity. The magnificent interlude is a clear homage to 73-75 King Crimson, with the addition of delightful mellotron (or mellotron-like) washes and exciting sax flourishes. I wonder what this track would have sounded like had the band explored it further into a more epic structure, but again, this is something than can be virtually said about any OE track so far. All in all, this EP is an excellent demostration of the band's energy and inventiveness, and so, I finish this review with the following word of advice aimed at all prog-lovers around the globe: download the EP!!
Report this review (#155964)
Posted Wednesday, December 19, 2007 | Review Permalink
Honorary Collaborator
4 stars Finnish based band Onségen Ensemble really takes you on a trip on their second EP HottoïzzoH.

From the avant-garde repetitive theme overlayed with solo guitar that develops into a quirky psychedelic number on the opening track, followed by a mellow jazz-tinged second number evolving gradually towards metal territories before finishing off with a track starting off as a frenzied psychedelic affair evolving towards a more free form chaotic musical landscape; this is a challenging release indeed.

Well performed, and either well planned or well jammed, the end result is a release worth checking out by people into experimental avant-garde music; and might be of interest to fans of psychedelic rock too.

Report this review (#158105)
Posted Tuesday, January 8, 2008 | Review Permalink
3 stars I was positively surprised finding this from Finland, and though there's some typical Finnish things here (maybe somehow reminding me of new age), it's very energetic and eclectic, and songs are well done and harmonic. But it's not a full-length album (and three fairly short tracks; it's not easing the hungry much), so I give three stars and continue waiting for something to come. I also had some exceptions and I don't really like this kind of music so much (post&psychedelic rock jamming), although the really raging avant-garde is my cup of tea. HottoïzzoH is tight jazz/psychedelic rock, in the name of Kingston Wall, but it's still quite different. The very beginning reminds Bondage Fruit's Kinzoku No Taiji (well, there's very little zeuhl in this mini album). The music in this record is post-rock-like constructive from repetititition (not too much, however), many times guitar oriented. Ouía Mi Mosa has more light latin jazz atmosphere but to me the vocals sound a bit japanese. VTG's beginning is almost straight from Magma's De Futura's climax part. But the song is very nice, dark, sometimes with slower heavy parts (like death metal, or let's say Nirvana's heavy metal) but this clearly moves towards avant-garde, from chamber rock to a bit metallic atmosphere (Nebelnest comes to my mind). Heavy.
Report this review (#185068)
Posted Wednesday, October 8, 2008 | Review Permalink

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