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Brother Ape - A Rare Moment Of Insight CD (album) cover


Brother Ape

Jazz Rock/Fusion

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Honorary Collaborator
5 stars This is the best Brother Ape album yet--and, because of its consistently high content and performances, one of my Top Ten of 2010. One thing this album has that previous Brother Ape albums perhaps lacked is GREAT production--sound is mixed VERY clearly (though the drums are often given a bit too much volume.)

"Juggernaut Now" [8/10] and "Ultramarathon" [9/10] have a distinctive JIMI HENDRIX EXPERIENCE sound and feel to them--(except for the wonderful TREVOR HORN-like voice)--which makes sense since this is a three-piece rock band with a very active drummer. The whelm of MAX BERGMAN's frenetic pace and style (sounding a lot like KEITH MOON sans cymbol mania) takes some getting used to, but once past that you have some pretty amazing songs here. Some BLUE OYSTER CULT-like guitar riffs in "Ultramarathon" give it a varied feel, while the calming vocal and wild drumming continues to provide the tension to make the glue holding the song together.

"Chrysalis" [8/10] slows things down a bit and presents an almost DEPECHE MODE-OCEANSIZE marriage of sound. Cool song. I love that all of this album's songs have so many subtleties to be extracted from the music with each successive listen.

"Seabound" [8/10] has a bit of a feel as if FLEET FOXES or MOON SAFARI's vocal harmonies were singing over YES's "Turn of the Century." Very nice, quite nostalgic, song. Very nice acoustic guitar work.

"Instinct" [9/10] is my favorite. It has a lot of atmospheric sounds floating behind the drums: keys, vocals, even bass are very etheric. Great vocal melody lines (and, later, harmonies) and awesome lead guitar solo around the 4:00 mark. Love the spacious outro.

"Echoes of Madness" [8/10] is a great upbeat song with some very catching vocal hooks and chord progressions while constructed like a classic RUSH song. I really love the Alex Lifeson-sounding guitar sounds (the strums!) here--including the LIFESON-like solo beginning at the 4:30 mark. Great vocal performance (including the BUGGLES-like distant echo). Again, it's the little, subtle extras (the acoustic guitar work is awesome!) that make this song--and album--so amazing!

"The Art of Letting Go" [9/10] has a very emotional presentation and vocal performance. The way it builds--from plaintive STYX-like piano & voice to full blown ROBIN TROWER-like rocker--is, to me, reminiscent of many moments of the best of LED ZEPPELIN's sounds and style(s). Amazing instrumental section beginning at 4:45, repeated again as the slowly fading outro in the last minute!

The album wraps up with the gorgeous acoustic guitar piece, "In a Rare Moment." [9/10] It's a beautiful song quite reminiscent of something ANT PHILLIPS and MICHAEL HEDGES or ERIK SATIE might have collaborated on.

Excellent musicianship, beautiful song constructions, tons of layers of subtle sonic atmospherics, along with the very catchy, gorgeous TREVOR HORN-like vocals make this album one of my favorite discoveries of the past year. Whether or not I can honestly call it a 'masterpiece' is too early to tell. For now call it worthy of 4.5 stars, rated up for my excitement and HIGHEST RECOMMENDATION over this album, though I admit that its compositions are perhaps less than truly innovative or truly progressive. Still: Bravo, Brother Ape! EVERYBODY: CHECK THIS ONE OUT! You won't be disappointed!

Report this review (#385616)
Posted Monday, January 24, 2011 | Review Permalink
4 stars This affirms what makes this site so very special. First, a big thanks to BrufordFreak and the review of the new Brother Ape album, Force Majeure. I went and downloaded their previous album, A Rare Moment Of Insight, based off his current review. BrufordFreak is absolutely right... how did that album get by us all??? It's progressive, fresh -- a sound that is very easy to get lost in. This album is a treat, perfectly executed and with great production!

I also agree, this is NOT a jazz rock/ fusion album and does not belong in this category at all. I'd have to say the band reminds me of a result of an unwanted pregnancy between Mystery and MuteMath and belongs in the Post Rock / Math Rock division. The drumming parallels Darren King's style -- a low-fi, bombastic, drum-n-bass approach, but the band has created their own thing here. The music has everything -- atmosphere, dynamics, electronics, unique musical explorations, creative arrangements and production, a great singer and solo sections that don't noodle on and on, but provides substance and gravity to the direction of the music as a whole. There is a spacey energy with this album that just flows. I've listened to the album 3 times in a row now and I'm finding new sonic discoveries with every listen. Will it stand the test of time? That's the test for 5 stars from this reviewer, but so far a solid 4+ stars.

Good ears BrufordFeak! Powerful stuff indeed. This is one of the better albums!

Report this review (#1075078)
Posted Sunday, November 10, 2013 | Review Permalink

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