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Eddie Jobson - UKZ/Radiation CD (album) cover

UKZ/RADIATION

Eddie Jobson

Progressive Electronic


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Atavachron
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR
Honorary Collaborator
3 stars U.K. has reunited. Sort of.

Well okay not really, but the material here does have recognizable traces from what was going to be a new version of that esteemed prog/fusion outfit [to be called Legacy] as well as remnants of Eddie Jobson's solo project Zinc which released an LP in 1983. The name 'UKZ' is a reference to both bands. Here, however, we're treated to the tremendous chops of jazzrock guitarist Alex Machacek as well as Trey Gunn's contributions on the 10-string Touch guitar, Marco Minnemann's drums, and the voice of Aaron Lippert. And of course the world class presentation and performance of Mr. Jobson.

Radiation is a typical grower and after a somewhat cold first impression, began attracting me more each time I audited the short-but-sweet four cut EP. The production is, unsurprisingly, pristine thanks to Jobson's skills and seasoned touch as an arranger/mixer. One wishes for more than twenty minutes of material, though a whole album may have proven unnecessary and perhaps the EP was a good choice. After a full minute of slow-churning rumbles from Jobson's pedals the screech of a mistuned radio signal breaks open our title track, a high power rocker with the angry vocal of Lippert, Crim-ean guitar chords and an engaging keyboard break. Alex Machacek takes full advantage of his lead passage here dropping-in one of the best guitar solos in recent memory, infused with the best of McLaughlin and Holdsworth. Quiet 'Houston' echoes Major Tom and drones along uneventfully, but the insistent angles of 'Tu-95' restore the progressive direction with a thoroughly satisfying instrumental piece, at times inspired and undoubtedly the axis on this record, Machacek's gentle jazz trailing at the end.

A project that should be well appreciated outside of its 'Electronic' manor, and a nice reemergence from the vast wasteland of soundtracks and guest appearances for this veteran great. Good show, and deserving of more than the meager 3 stars awarded by this writer's stingy ass.

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Posted Thursday, January 14, 2010 | Review Permalink

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