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The Mute Gods

Crossover Prog

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The Mute Gods Do Nothing Till You Hear from Me album cover
3.56 | 73 ratings | 3 reviews | 8% 5 stars

Excellent addition to any
prog rock music collection

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Studio Album, released in 2016

Songs / Tracks Listing

1. Do Nothing Till You Hear from Me (7:43)
2. Praying to a Mute God (5:06)
3. Nightschool for Idiots (6:00)
4. Feed the Troll (4:55)
5. Your Dark Ideas (4:41)
6. In the Crosshairs (3:18)
7. Strange Relationship (6:10)
8. Swimming Horses (7:05)
9. Father Daughter (4:09)

Total Time 49:07

Bonus tracks on 2016 double-LP edition:
B3. Last Man on Earth (5:30)
D1. Mavro Capelo (5:08)

Line-up / Musicians

- Roger King / keyboards, guitar, backing vocals, programming, producer & mixing
- Nick Beggs / bass, guitar, keyboards, Chapman stick (2,5,6,9,D1), 8-string bass (2,6,7,D1), 12-string guitar (2,7,8), programming, vocals
- Marco Minnemann / drums, percussion, guitar (1,2), piano (2)

- Adel Ekladios / Arabic voice (1)
- Kevin Tang / Mandarin voice (1)
- Lula Beggs / lead & backing vocals & Fx (9)
- Rob Reed / guitar & keyboards (8)
- Frank van Bogaert / piano & keyboards & backing vocals (7), Hammond (8)
- Rick Wilde / keyboards & guitar & backing vocals (9,B3)
- Adam Holzman / keyboards & programming (D1)
- Gary O'Toole / drums (7)
- Nick D'Virgilio / drums & guitar & keyboards (8)

Releases information

Artwork: Steve Cripps Graphic Design with Lars 'Zeituhr' Tellman (photo)

CD Inside Out Music ‎- IOMCD 440 (2016, Europe)

2LP + CD Inside Out ‎- IOMLP 440 (2016, Europe) Full album on both media, with 2 bonus tracks

Thanks to tszirmay for the addition
and to projeKct for the last updates
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Buy THE MUTE GODS Do Nothing Till You Hear from Me Music

THE MUTE GODS Do Nothing Till You Hear from Me ratings distribution

(73 ratings)
Essential: a masterpiece of progressive rock music(8%)
Excellent addition to any prog rock music collection(52%)
Good, but non-essential (29%)
Collectors/fans only (7%)
Poor. Only for completionists (4%)

THE MUTE GODS Do Nothing Till You Hear from Me reviews

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

Collaborators/Experts Reviews

Review by tszirmay
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator
4 stars Having seen Nick Beggs live with Steve Wilson on the 2015 tour, and being totally seduced by both his instrumental command as well as his obvious enthusiasm, it was hard to resist jumping on the Mute Gods bandwagon, especially with such luminaries as keyboardist Roger King and drummer Marco Minnemann as co-stars. Beggs has always impressed me with Iona but his recent work with Lifesigns, Fish on Friday, Steve Hackett and Steve Wilson really sealed the deal. The majority of the material was assembled during tours, in hotel rooms, on restaurant paper napkins (I wonder about that image, though) and presumably, while travelling in some long-haul airliner to the next gig.

Before getting into the details of this debut album, let it be said for the record that it is an absolute grower that will not necessarily grab you immediately by the throat except for the final and fabulously personal "Father Daughter" ballad, which is the sincerest song one is likely to hear in a lifetime. More about that jewel later. The album is a diverse set list of songs that span a wide spectrum of styles, including dark symphonics, quirky yet intelligent prog- pop, brooding modern progressive rock which are obviously imbued by the various influences of working with professionals like Steve Hackett and Steve Wilson. After numerous spins, I can really appreciate the flawless quality of the playing, the courageous tackling of various touchy subjects (religion, political conspiracy, dystopia, apathy, human issues and parenting) which surely resemble the more contemporary interests of modern prog bands as well as Beggs' penchant for not wanting to overplay his talent. Minnemann and King actually contribute greatly to the sound and substance, all three doing the guitar parts by committee. All of this was really quite transparent upon first glance, so I urge deeper investigation before criticizing with too much facility.

The opening title track is the longest track here, clocking in at nearly 8 minutes, and really setting the tone with some moody atmospherics and tight bright chops. Lyrically, "Do Nothing till You Hear from Me" was inspired by president and former General Eisenhower's famous televised about the rise of the military?industrial complex, a highly interesting historical anomaly BTW, as well as the geologist Phil Schneider who said some rather interesting things regarding UFOs, before dying suspiciously, presumably silenced. I could not help feeling a slight kinship with fellow Brit storyteller Guy Manning, who also enjoys controversial subject matter in his song writing.

"Praying to a Mute God" also contrasts light musical style with rather somber lyrical material. Beggs states" We seem to be living in a time of heightened religious fundamentalism in which people deliver the wrath of God or speak out on his behalf". There is a load of detail in the recording, jumbled dissonance which comes across as social dissatisfaction verging on anger and fear, of living in a new age fraught with deceit, despair and maybe even futility. Hence, the apathy that Wilson constantly harps on, and rightly so.

The most controversial track here is the subtle "Nightschool for Idiots" which some critics have panned for being too simplistic and commercial. Yes, there is a strong 80s feel, a vocal closer to the Korgis (or maybe even Kajagoogoo?) but the sweet playfulness is very British and wholly eccentric that harkens back to No-Man's Wild Opera album (and a masterpiece in my opinion, with lusciously clever tracks like "Housewives Hooked on Heroin" and "My Rival Trevor"). To prove the point, Beggs segues with the disconsolate and blunt "Feed the Troll", perhaps the most contrasting follow up you could hope for, a surly and nasty keyboard-driven sonic snow plow straight out of the Porcupine Tree style. 'Little room without a view' he pleads as he sits at the computer, blogging bull[&*!#] and judging everyone and everything, not by expertise but by Internet access.

In case you feel the material is still a tad too saccharine after 'Idiots', the heavy mood remains revolting with the sombre "Your Dark Ideas", anchored by its careening synth loops (Roger King does masterful work all through this release) and Minneman's concussive percussives. The surly and snarky laugh that precedes the churning organ flurry says it all, augmented by the brooding and uncomfortable pace, with creeping Crimsoid seething. The bodyguard track is "In the Crosshairs", which just carries on the sweeping drama, Arabic-styled guitar storms and mellotron ablaze, certainly influenced by many a Hackett instrumental (check out the guitar phrasings, pfff). Clever and delicious.

Two more longer tracks really flesh out the work with some seriously Steve Wilson inspired stylistics, Beggs sweet voice urging melancholia ('the language of despair' he sings) on "Strange Relationships", combining joy and doom and mounds of painful atmosphere bathed in gorgeous melodies, expertly detailed (Gary O'Toole's cymbal work), the forlorn piano outro by Frank van Bogaert is brief but ravishing. "Swimming Horses" is perhaps the most progressive styled piece here, Rob Reed adding massive dollops of ringing keyboards, and a rumbling bass undertow allied with a Tony Banks-like organ splurge from Belgian van Bogaert. Nick D'Virgilio provides some exemplary drum work as well but the true highlight is Nick Beggs's effective vocal work.

Speaking of vocal wonders, I promised to talk more about "Father Daughter", a rather blatant sounding electro- ballad that would make the Pet Shop Boys or Naked Eyes jealous and proud, except for a rather innocuous detail: the duet here is highly charged and personal, a sung discussion between daughter Lula Beggs and her father that would make a mountain range weep in silence. The chorus, the delivery and the lyrics are exemplary and frankly, outright beautiful. The gulping throat will need time to recover, you just need to be sensitive to being a parent in the 21st century, I guess.

This project needs to continue, Mr.Beggs

4 Quiet idols

Review by DangHeck
3 stars A supergroup of touring musicians from Steve Hackett's and Steven Wilson's bands, I guess I'm really here for Marco. You can see my reviews for his early discography: I'm an advocate haha. I really don't know Nick Beggs, as it were, but certainly intrigued by anyone who has any mastery over the Chapman Stick. This is a review for an apparent later release with a few slight changes to tracklist/bonus track ordering.

"Do Nothing Till You Hear From Me" is our opener, with open electronica, reminiscent of Krautrock. Vocally somehow reminiscent of Wilson; Bri'ish peepo', amirite? This sort of thing unfortunately feels a little dated. Just a focus that doesn't feel like it holds up, but I know that's also coming from me. I'm just a skeptic. Of course it's well performed, just not a whole lot for me. Alternatively, "Praying to a Mute God" immediately has a more classic sound. Here, Begg's vocals are definitely stronger to me. This track has great melody and a pretty cool, beefy riff. Great guitar solo, too! Wow! What a turn.

Certainly charmed by "Nightschool for Idiots". A personal feel, for sure, but also sweet. Quite the juxtaposition with the next, the swelling "Feed the Troll". Really cool harpy-type something after minute 1. Nice riff; Marco's on fire; 'nuff said? Very tense song. Some creepy, deep yet soft vocals that reminded me of some of the backing vocals through Kate Bush's career. "Your Dark Ideas" starts off familiar somehow... Wonky rhythm innit? Not super into it, honestly. I'm sure the 'ideas' were 'dark', but I can grant you that they were at least decent.

"Last Man on Earth" is... fine. "In the Crosshairs" has a pretty cool opening/main riff. And the instrumentation is very satisfying. The guitar and synth leads slide all around. All the while, right n' heavy. "Strange Relationship" starts off with Marco showin' his versatility with a jazzy feel. This is kind of a post-Raga-Rock, lightly neo-Psychedelic number. Another moment where Roger King shines on synth. Kind of static track, yet a lot to offer texturally.

Now introducing a BRAND NEW BREED, "Swimming Horses", one of the few tracks that really pulls me in from the start. Very cool. Certainly we do have "the ebb and flow" as Beggs says on this one. Sweet vocally, but a lot going on underneath. Swirling accompaniment, sort of Eastern in scope as well, with Marco's snare popping out of the mix bright and strong. Not exactly static, and even so, the textures and general performance is interesting in and of itself.

"Mavro Capelo" also has an interestingly Eastern something-or-rather goin' on. At first low and slow, it picks up to another heavy riff. The synthwork here is very very cool. Around minute 2, big shift toward's something... Baroque, I guess? Very interesting. Then back to the main heaviness... It kind of loses me there, but it's not a bad song, in the least. And finally, "Father Daughter" is an expectedly sweeter number. Vocal responsibilities are shared with Nick's daughter, I trust, Lulu Beggs. Very nice. Again, a sweet sweet song. Not saccharine, but sincere. And well performed.

And that's it! I will certainly be continuing to dive in, in time, but really just to look for those especially more golden moments from the trio.

Latest members reviews

4 stars Here we have basically a solo album of one of the most demanded bassists on present prog scene. I have followed Nick Beggs since his recent works with some of my favorite artists - Steve Hackett, Steven Wilson, and also John Michtell's Lonely Robot. So when I got known about this, I couldn't mis ... (read more)

Report this review (#1561258) | Posted by stewe | Thursday, May 12, 2016 | Review Permanlink

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