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Birdsongs Of The Mesozoic


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Birdsongs Of The Mesozoic Birdsongs Of The Mesozoic With Oral Moses: Extreme Spirituals album cover
2.82 | 17 ratings | 2 reviews | 12% 5 stars

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Studio Album, released in 2006

Songs / Tracks Listing

1. I´m A Rollin (5.31)
2. Couldn´t Hear Nobody Pray (3.23)
3. A Little More Faith In Jesus (5.37)
4. Sometimes I Feel Like A Motherless Child (4.07)
5. Joshua Fit The Battle Of Jericho (3.37)
6. Swing Low Sweet Chariot (4.17)
7. Listen To Tthe Angels Shoutin´(4.20)
8. Wayfaring Stranger (4.13)
9. Great Day (5.05)
10. Nobody Knows The Trouble I See (5.11)
11. Oh Freedom (4.44)
12. Amen (5.23)

Total Time: 55:45

Line-up / Musicians

- Oral Moses / bass baritone
- Michael Bierylo / guitar, programming, sound design
- Ken Field / saxophones, flute, percussion
- Erik Lindgren / acoustic grand piano
- Rick Scott / synthesizer

Additional musicians:
- Larry Dersch / drums (3,8,9)
- Terry Donahue / conga (1)
- Jason Marchionna / percussion (2,5,12)
- Ken Winokur / djembe (1)

Releases information

CD Cuneiform Records (2006)

Thanks to victor77 for the addition
and to Joolz for the last updates
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BIRDSONGS OF THE MESOZOIC Birdsongs Of The Mesozoic With Oral Moses: Extreme Spirituals ratings distribution

(17 ratings)
Essential: a masterpiece of progressive rock music(12%)
Excellent addition to any prog rock music collection(18%)
Good, but non-essential (41%)
Collectors/fans only (29%)
Poor. Only for completionists (0%)

BIRDSONGS OF THE MESOZOIC Birdsongs Of The Mesozoic With Oral Moses: Extreme Spirituals reviews

Showing all collaborators reviews and last reviews preview | Show all reviews/ratings

Collaborators/Experts Reviews

Review by Man With Hat
COLLABORATOR Jazz-Rock/Fusion/Canterbury Team
2 stars A strange, hilarious mix.

A collaboration that most people would have never thought should have happened. From what I could gather, Oral Moses is a well renowned bass baritone singer, who I never heard of before this record, deeply rooted in the gospel/spiritual/slave song/similar type of musics scene, none of which fit nicely with Birdsongs Of The Mesozoic's avant-garde classical electronic rock type of thing. Yet, here are the two sides, firmly smashed together. First things first, all of these songs are covers of traditional spirituals. Granted, aside from the singing you can't tell, but this really isn't a true blue new Birdsongs work. And the results, for me, are more hilarity than brilliance. Oral is singing very seriously throughout the disc, and at least on the songs that I know, rather straight forward and in line with how the songs are generally sung. The music, on the other hand, is more or less the exact opposite of traditional. Strange synthetic sounds, drum machines, electronic drifts, lots of keyboard happenings, an oddly tuneful sax and a general experimental (at times a peuso-experimental) atmosphere back Mr. Moses. The juxtaposition between the new (technology and experimentation) and old (singing and the songs themselves) is the greatest strength of this album. However, that is not enough to really save it.

Honestly, the first time I heard this record there was a good deal of laughing. The way Oral's vocals don't fit the music at all (or the way the music doesn't fit the vocals at all) is at times to much to take as a serious entity. At times it almost sounds like they were trying to get the listener to laugh, which from reading the liner notes certainly wasn't the intent of BOTM or Oral Moses. And most of the time it sounds like they clipped the vocals from a true (or regular) version of the songs and just substituted in music from a completely different source. Sure, at times the sax will play the melody, but that quickly passes and the band goes it's own way. On the surface, this style isn't a problem for me, and could be excellent. But there is a bigger problem here. There are instances where it sounds like the band is holding back, where they could be doing more to fill out the space. The result is music that sound very thin at times, almost as if it's unfinished, or they forgot to mix in another couple of tracks into the song. Maybe Birdsongs didn't want to overstep their bounds, but really, taking on a project such as this is bound to step on some toes along the way, so you might as well go all out. Now there are some positives here. Joshua Fit The Battle Of Jericho is quite nice. The music finally seems to be firing on nearly all cylinders and gets the listeners attention. The same could be said for most of the final song Amen. Unfortunately, it does suffer from being a little bit of the cheesy side in the middle bits. And Oral's voice is very nice and the deep tones could be rather soothing in the right context. Sure, it doesn't really fit with the music, but it can stand on it's own.

All in all, this is a curious page in the book of Birdsongs Of The Mesozoic. For an entirely instrumental band to go out and find a bass baritone singer and do an entire album of religious covers, is something I'm sure no one expected them to do. I just wish this was more successful and I wish the music was fuller. The humor aspect also loses something over repeated listens, although I still laugh uncontrollably during Couldn't Hear Nobody Pray. I also hope this isn't the last Birdsongs album, because this would really be a low note to go out on. There is really nothing for prog fans to grab onto here, other than, perhaps, the mixing of two things that usually aren't mixed. Needless to say, if you don't like your lyrics to be saturated with Christian themes, don't even think about this record. Similarly, if you like your music smooth and consonant, you could skip this one as well. Really, this is only for fans of the band who want to hear them in another light. A good idea that wasn't executed as well as it could have been. 2 stars.

Latest members reviews

4 stars Birdsongs of the Mesozic appear again with a great surprise for those who have listened to them previously. In this occasion, they join with Oral Moses (opera singer, specialist in african american composers, gospel, spirituals and Doctor of Musical Arts Degree in Vocal Performance and Opera). ... (read more)

Report this review (#121040) | Posted by victor77 | Monday, May 7, 2007 | Review Permanlink

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