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Guapo History Of The Visitation album cover
3.99 | 92 ratings | 5 reviews | 27% 5 stars

Excellent addition to any
prog rock music collection

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Studio Album, released in 2013

Songs / Tracks Listing

1. The Pillman Radiant (26:15) :
- I. Visitation
- II. The Divine Vessel
- III. Wriggling Magnet
- IV. Mosquito Mange
- V. Devine Vessel's Reprise
2. Complex #7 (4:47)
3. Tremors from the Future (11:15)

Total Time: 42:17

Bonus Live DVD:
1. Five Suns - Live at Nearfest 2006 (32:20)
2. King Lindorm - Live (14:44)

Total Time 47:04

Line-up / Musicians

- Kavus Torabi / guitar, santoor
- Emmett Elvin / Fender Rhodes, organ, synth, harmonium , guitar (1-I), arrangements (3)
- James Sedwards / bass
- David J. Smith / drums, percussion, keyboards, santoor, co-producer

- Thomas Frasier Scott / soprano & alto saxes, flute, clarinet, oboe, bassoon
- Dave Newhouse / baritone & tenor saxes, bass clarinet, alto flute
- Sam Morris / French horn
- Emma Sullivan / trumpet
- Chloe Heringon / bassoon
- Sarah Anderson / violin, viola
- Geri McEwan / violin
- Antti Uusimaki / additional keyboards, effects, co-producer, mixing

DVD Lineup:
- Kavus Torabi / guitar, melodica
- Daniel O'Sullivan / Fender Rhodes, keyboards, effects, melodica
- James Sedwards / bass
- David J. Smith / drums, percussion

Releases information

Artwork: Voodoo Design

CD+DVD Cuneiform Records - Rune 354/355 (2013, US)

LP+DVD Cuneiform Records - Rune 354/355 (2013, US)

Digital album

Thanks to Andy Webb for the addition
and to projeKct for the last updates
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GUAPO History Of The Visitation ratings distribution

(92 ratings)
Essential: a masterpiece of progressive rock music(27%)
Excellent addition to any prog rock music collection(38%)
Good, but non-essential (29%)
Collectors/fans only (5%)
Poor. Only for completionists (0%)

GUAPO History Of The Visitation reviews

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

Collaborators/Experts Reviews

Review by kev rowland
4 stars There are times, just times you understand, when I question my sanity. Having now played this album a few times I wonder how can anyone enjoy listening to music where it is at the very edge of the definition? I can honestly say that I don't think that I would have listened to this all the way through when I was younger ? like broad beans and brussel sprouts this is something that is almost exclusively the preserve of those who are older and can savour the experience. The band has been going for 19 years, and currently comprises drummer and founding member David J. Smith with mainstays Kavus Torabi (Cardiacs, Knifeworld) on guitar and James Sedwards (Nøght) on bass, joined by recent addition Emmett Elvin (Chrome Hoof, Knifeworld) on keyboards.

Now as soon as I see the name Cardiacs I sit up and pay attention, and have also enjoyed what I have heard from Knifeworld, but it is fair to say that these guys understanding of music here (the label helpfully provides some references such as controlled chaos, atonal harmony, uplifting darkness, and beautiful destruction) is quite different to many. They seem to mix RIO with prog, and while King Crimson is a fairly obvious reference it is possible to also bring Magma, Univers Zero, elements of Can, The Mars Volta etc. easy listening this isn't.

This instrumental album only contains three songs, and the first of these is twenty six minutes long so it is heads down and see you at the end. There are large similarities with free jazz, although never quite veering into that territory although reedmen Thomas Scott and Dave Newhouse from Maryland avant jazz-rock institution The Muffins are some of the guests taking part. The label describes this as "Sun Ra jamming with Stravinsky", and if that makes you believe that this can be hard work to listen to, yet ultimately rewarding, then you would be right. This will only appeal to a small part of the music buying public, but those who enjoy finding something different need to investigate further.

Review by Sean Trane
4 stars After a four or five years hiatus, Guapo returns with what we could e'asily call their Mk3 era, since O'Sullivan has now left. Indeed, the band's musical scope had dramatically shifted from a noisy experimental and dissonant quagmire, to a much more palatable zeuhl-ish post rock (from Five Suns onwards). Despite bassist Thompson quickly dropping out of the picture, the trio (at first), then a duo, became a quartet with the preceding Elixirs. Replacing O'Sullivan is Emmett Emvin, but his style does not differ much much his predecessor, especuially that he's using more or less the same instruments, but mainly a Rhodes. Musically the band had shifted from a certain form of Zeuhl to an interesting Post Rock, then slowly growing into their unclassifiable brand of prog. A rather bland outer artwork, though the inner folds are much brighter and sunnier forest shots, which is rather unusual for the band. Also invited are a bunch of horn players (5) and two string players, though they're not overly present, and therefore this does not change the band's general soundscapes.

The album itself features three tracks, the first of which is a five-movement 26-mns Pilman Radiant. As usual the piece opens with a lengthy and calm intro, gradually picking up momentum and intensity, to lead us into the demented soundscapes and foray deeply in the entrails of the band's musical realm. The short (less than 5-mins) Complex 7 track can be seen as the intro of the 11-mins finale Tremors From The Future piece., which is filled with heroics and histrionics. Great stuff.

As a bonus, the ever-excellent Cuneiform label includes a DVD that features two concert footages from two different festivals (Nearfest 06 and RIO Fest 07) when O'Sullivan was still in the band. If both footage are very interesting, don't expect professional filming (the sound is quite OK, though), as it's mostly one (sometimes two fixed cameras shooting the scene. Nearfest's Five Suns film is in black & white and shows the amazing live dynamics of the band, despite two seated musicians. The French RIO fest (which yours truly attended) footage is shot in colour, but it would be an exaggeration to say that it is in superior quality than its companion footage. However, I had almost forgotten how the King Lindorm piece gad enthralled me back then. Yet another absolutely stunning Cuneiform and Guapo album, one that will give me further enticement to check them out live yet another time (seen them four times already) at this year when they return to this year's RIO fest.

Review by Mellotron Storm
4 stars 4.5 stars. Some major changes in the GUAPO world after the "Elixers" album where the band was down to the duo of David J. Smith and Daniel O'Sullivan. Enter Kavus Torabi and Emmett Elvin from KNIFEWORLD along with new bass player James Sedwards. We get 8 guests playing a variety of horns and strings including THE MUFFINS Dave Newhouse.

"The Pillman Radiant" is such a great title to the opening track that takes up the bulk of this album at over 26 minutes. The first 5 minutes are experimental and dark with plenty of atmosphere including eerie sounds after a couple of minutes. This all changes as we get a calm before the bass, keys and drums kick in. Guitar after 7 minutes and it's angular. A change after 10 minutes as the tempo picks up with the guitar playing over top. Pulsating organ 15 minutes in as the heaviness continues. Huge bass lines and ripping guitar follows. The intensity rises after 17 minutes before it all starts to wind down 18 1/2 minutes in. It sounds so cool a minute later with sounds coming and going in this experimental section. There's actually a BLACK SABBATH-like vibe("Master Of Reality") after 21 minutes in this urgent sounding section. The band are on fire before 24 minutes then we get what sounds like mellotron as it settles back but this is still powerful. What a song!

"Complex #7" is a haunting and experimental piece that is dark and spacey as well. "Tremors From The Future" opens with pulsating keys as the drums join in and the tempo picks up. It's fuller before 2 1/2 minutes. I'm thinking ANEKDOTEN after 3 1/2 minutes and 5 1/2 minutes with that angular guitar and sound. The tempo picks up 6 minutes in but it settles back some with angular guitar. The pulsating keys are back. How impressive does this sound after 8 minutes. Insane! The organ runs over the throbbing bass and sound. Ripping guitar 9 1/2 minutes in and I really like the mellotron-like sounds a minute later to the end.

This is one of my highlights from 2013 for sure and i'd rate it just behind "Obscure Knowledge" and "Five Suns" when it comes to the GUAPO catalogue.

Review by Warthur
4 stars A comparatively terse album for Guapo - in its physical incarnation the release is made a bit more tempting with a bonus live DVD - finds the band exploring its usual vast range of sounds. The epic Pilman Radiant finds them bridging sounds ranging from the brutal prog of Five Suns or Black Oni to more jazzy, lighter affairs, reminiscent of the Canterbury-tinged early sound of RIO pioneers like Samla Mammas Manna or Henry Cow. Complex #7 is a harshly electronic intermission before the foreboding Tremors From the Future plays us out. Not quite as groundbreaking as Five Suns or Black Oni, but it's still nice to see Guapo keeping their hand in the game.

Latest members reviews

5 stars I pretty much quit giving 5 stars for anything but "the gods of the golden era." I pretty much quit writing reviews, as I was (and still am) so enthralled with the aforementioned giants of prog and the newly remixed, 5.1 or remastered additions of these heroes (Early Genesis, Tull, etc....) Then ... (read more)

Report this review (#1297124) | Posted by tmay102436 | Sunday, October 26, 2014 | Review Permanlink

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