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Michael Mantler - Silence CD (album) cover


Michael Mantler

Jazz Rock/Fusion

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Crossover & JR/F/Canterbury Teams
2 stars This is one of those occasions where someone's attempt to be hip and arty overwhelms the project they were undertaking. Michael Mantler, and his wife at that time Carla Bley had each attempted to create musical versions of written plays and stories, with various degrees of success.

Here Mantler has created a musical rendition of a Harold Pinter play, that is somewhat difficult to listen to. The music, in the rare times that it gets into any cohesive groove, sounds to me like the Canterbury style of jazz-rock, with a touch of New York avant-garde. The vocal parts often meander around the music without any clear path, making it hard to want to listen to what they are saying. I think I would prefer to just hear the music alone.

The back of the album jacket has the three vocalists inseparate photos, each looking introspective. Kevin Coyne and Robert Wyatt are each posed holding a cigarette to their mouth. It just seems soooo much N.Y. beatnik posturing. But the album conveys that as well.

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Posted Saturday, October 15, 2011 | Review Permalink

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