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One Shot - Dark Shot CD (album) cover

DARK SHOT

One Shot

Jazz Rock/Fusion


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Mellotron Storm
PROG REVIEWER
5 stars Three of the four members of this band have a Zeuhl background as they all have played in MAGMA. I'm talking about James Mac Gaw-guitar, Emmanuel Borghi-keyboards and Philippe Bussonnet-bass. Daniel Jeand'heur is one of my favourite drummers as well. He played on AMYGDALA's latest and was simply outstanding. This is truly a band effort as 3 of the 4 members composed 2 songs each, and Mac Gaw composed the other one. These guys are truly brilliant musicians who play a heavy, dark and atmospheric brand of Jazz that I cannot get enough of. This band is one of my top ten of all time favourite bands, which for me really speaks volumes about how I feel about them.

"Black P" is a Bussonnet composition and one of my top three songs on here. The way it opens with the dark keys and bass really brings MAGMA to mind before a full sound takes over quickly. Some feedback from Mac Gaw's guitar as the bass chugs along. Borghi becomes more prominant on keys before 4 minutes. Nice. Incredible sound before 5 minutes. I just can't praise this song enough. "Opus 12" is a Borghi tune. Keys not surprisingly lead the way in this more uptempo song. Again I just love the sound. Bussonnet is a genius on bass. This one is more jazzy than the first track. The tempo slows down 3 minutes in as James solos on his guitar. Philippe takes over on his bass after 5 minutes. "Def MK1" is Daniel's song. This one is darker and slower with keys and bass standing out, although the drums are active they are light at this point. The song gets heavier after 4 1/2 minutes. Great sound. Some angular guitar 6 minutes in starts to rip it up as Bussonnet offers up slabs of heavy bass. Check out the drumming 8 1/2 minutes in !

"Blade" is a Bussonnet composition and the shortest track at just under 5 minutes. It opens with a dark atmospheric soundscape as cymbals clash and keys come in. It ends as it began. A very cool song. "Automate" is Borghi's tune. It opens dramatically.This has a sinister vibe to it as the deep molten bass comes in and drums pound at a mid pace. Keys arrive as haunting guitar sounds come and go. Borghi starts to take a more prominant role before 4 minutes. Themes are repeated. "Downwards" is Mac Gaw's track and one of top three. The guitar fortunately takes a big role in this one. We get a nice heavy backdrop as James just lights it up throughout the 9 minutes. Amazing ! "Nosh Partitas" is Daniel's second tune. Great drum intro as it then settles down quickly as keys and bass take over. Incredible sounding guitar 2 minutes in as it grinds away before turning angular. Keys take over a minute later. The bass is just throbbing.

So hard to pick between this one and their earlier masterpiece "Ewaz Vader". By the way this one comes with a fantastic DVD of them playing in concert earlier this year. With Jannick Top's new record, and this new one from ONE SHOT I feel that 2008 has already been a huge success.

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Send comments to Mellotron Storm (BETA) | Report this review (#178926)
Posted Tuesday, August 05, 2008 | Review Permalink
tszirmay
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR
Crossover Team
5 stars Shadowy and menacing like an impending tornado, One Shot is one hell of a heavy prog nightmare, reminding us that King Crimson's "Red" was pretty close to zeuhl and that a fantastic foursome can still be the finest sonic orgy ever. This is a sledge-hammer guitar, keyboard, bass and drum onslaught with no frills or ornaments and no ribbons and bows. Contrary to their day Magma gig, they waste no time with vocals either, preferring a simple menu of just plain, head down instrumental fury .We are miles away from symphonic prog , delving instead into the deep core of molten rock , bubbling miasma, sweltering shards of fiery sound and harsh flows of powerful bravado. Fueled by the ominous Philippe Bussonet bass panzer and seconded by some rivet-busting drums from Daniel Jeand'heur, lead guitarist James McGaw and keyman Emmanuel Borghi have carte blanche (or rather carte noire!) to roam majestically and at will. The whirlwind "Black P" wastes little time in setting the stage with some ferocious flings that wink and nod at certain a red monarch from long ago, while "Opus 12" collides head on with softer machines, a driving heavy jazz romp that is totally unrelenting. Immediately it becomes apparent that these men really can handle their instruments convincingly and that a unique spirit elevates this to grandiose heights. "Def Mk1" is at first slightly more unsettling, urging towards a paranoia-laden concoction where the electric piano rules supreme (what a solo!) , a nasty bass grimace kicks in shoving the mood ever forward, deeper and deeper into a sonic chasm, some hotwire guitar needling away at the crust and serious explosive high voltage drumming to keep the tension sizzling. Wow! "Blade" is the briefest piece, a cymbal jungle veering into a softer expanse that offers some well-deserved respite and introspection, a razor sharp display of groom and doom. Slap on the gel, make it foam and let the cutting edge slice away the bristle. Cool indeed! "Automate" is a slingshot salvo back into aural insanity, a robotic Wetton-esque bass furrow sweeping everything in its path, ringing e-piano resonance caressing the road signs, deliberately baleful and lumbering. Trashy drums keep it all on track while a twisted synthesizer sortie makes an effective appearance, insistent and ravenous. "Downwards" is a guitar fiasco that ignites from the get-go, a histrionic unleashing of tone and texture that reveals McGaw's inner sanctum, a universe fluid and raw, uniquely disturbing and yet deadly accurate. There are no Holdsworthian displays in his attitude, in fact it's actually closer to early John MacLaughlin's (another crazy Scot) or more conventional rock guitarists like Fripp or Reine Fiske of Landberk legend. "Nosh Partitas" is a whopping closer that rages, vents and fulminates with little decorum, the throbbing bass well installed and the One Shotters headed to the sulfuric finish line

A gigantic thank you to sinkadotentree whose drooling comments and input helped me in savoring this sonic hurricane. In closing, prog is like making love , sometimes we like sweet and sensual and then there are those edgier moments when it's so good hard and sweaty . A no contest masterpiece. 5 sombre reptiles

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Send comments to tszirmay (BETA) | Report this review (#254405)
Posted Saturday, December 05, 2009 | Review Permalink
Sean Trane
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR
Prog Folk
4 stars Latest release (that I know of) from this French "Zeuhl" quartet, and a double disc affair: with one studio album (recorded over three months in early 08 in the Le Triton studio) and a live DVD of a concert, recorded early in that recording period over the adjoining concert hall. The still-unchanged line-up of OS delivers another batch of their dark and sombre instrumental soundscapes, between King Crimson and Magma or even Univers Zero, and on the more modern or lesser-known influences, one could mention Potemkine, Vortex, NeBeLNeST and a few more. Sooooo, you could say that One Shot sounds typically French prog, with some Zeuhl touches, induced by the pounding bass, but also the dark atmospheres of their music.

The DVD disc is made from one night's concert, where the band was allowed to develop their musical realm, but they chose mostly to feature their in-progress work of the album they were busy with. Indeed only Ewaz Vader (from the album of the same name) and Urm (from Vendredi 13) were familiar to the small public, the rest of their set being from the Dark Shot studio album. As you can guess, the DS tracks are much rawer live than their final studio versions, but they're already fairly close to their final version. As for EV and Urm, they sounded understandably more at ease with those older numbers. There is also a bonus live footage in the studio version of Blade (from their new album) and a two-part interview that is of relative interest. While all One Shot albums are fairly close sonically (especially with their first album recently remixed and remastered), this means that anyone of them could serve as an introduction to the band's works since they are all representative of the band's oeuvre, but if you're going to chose just one, you might want to choose the present Dark Shot, precisely because you get a visual aperçu performance to complete the aural experience.

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Send comments to Sean Trane (BETA) | Report this review (#553183)
Posted Thursday, October 20, 2011 | Review Permalink

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