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T.A.P Paradigms album cover
4.09 | 11 ratings | 6 reviews | 36% 5 stars

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Studio Album, released in 2023

Songs / Tracks Listing

1. Infinite Names (11:57)
2. The Progbient (5:02)
3. Initiate Protocol 7 (5:55)
4. Signal Transactions (6:22)
5. Silence from the Storm (12:27)
6. The Last Words of Dutch Schultz (5:02)
7. Terminus (5:40)
8. Silence from the Storm (HOI mix) (bonus track) (8:17)

Total Time 60:42

Line-up / Musicians

- Mike Jobborn / keyboards, synth, soundscapes, drum programming
- Mark Cook / Warr guitar, guitars, basses, drums, soundscapes, synths, samples, strings
- Suzi James / guitars, bass, oud, flute, percussion
- Gayle Ellett / Hammond, Moog, Mellotron (1,2,4,7,8)
- Paul Sears / drums & percussion (5)
- Bill Bachman / drums (8)

Releases information

Label: MRR
Format: CD, Digital
October 6, 2023

Thanks to Nogbad_The_Bad for the addition
and to mbzr48 & projeKct for the last updates
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T.A.P Paradigms ratings distribution

(11 ratings)
Essential: a masterpiece of progressive rock music(36%)
Excellent addition to any prog rock music collection(18%)
Good, but non-essential (36%)
Collectors/fans only (9%)
Poor. Only for completionists (0%)

T.A.P Paradigms reviews

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

Collaborators/Experts Reviews

Review by tszirmay
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator
5 stars This is quite the progressive project, combining some serious global talent, namely Fearful Symmetry's guitarist Suzie James from the UK, Canada's Mike Jobborn on keyboards, Americans Mark Cook on Warr guitar and bass, drummers Paul Sears and Bill Bachman and finally Gayle Ellett showing his mellotron skills among other ivories. The material is all instrumental and focuses clearly on complex evolutions of experimental progression, and certainly not aimed for the faint of heart or the dancing disco bunny glitterati. The delivery is intense, demanding attention from the audience that must concentrate on the sounds and imagining whatever individual emotions that make come of them, a typical modern prog adventure.

The sprawling 12 minute 'Infinite Names' is a scorching slice of futuristic expanse, proposing a mind-numbing gurgle of synthesized substance, on which guitarist Mark Cook gets to channel his nasty Warr guitar with some lethal oblique runs in apparent controlled exuberance. The apocalyptic disposition shifts into a subdued electronics drenched segment that sets up a bluesier fretboard foray, with a laid-back beat and some delirious soloing from the crisscrossing of Suzy James' fluid guitar and the intrusive Warr beast. Another wave of sonic serenity is the perfect set-up for the audience to settle in and get comfortably numb. The finale rekindles the finer moments of the Robert Fripp-Andy Summers collaboration back in the early 80s. 'The Progbient' has all the musical ingredients in its title, an ominously fluttering soundscape that infuses a supremely funky e-piano played by Jobborn with gusto, an upbeat diversion that has immediate impact qualities that cannot be ignored, laced with subtle mellotron washes. The moody perspective of 'Initiate Protocol 7' recalls the kind of soundtrack one would hear in some strange sci-fi movie where cowboys and aliens would meet on some forgotten mesa, the dual guitar work showcasing the two sides, little dabs of flute from Suzy adding flair to the effort and some foundational e-piano, a hallmark feature on a multitude of tracks (love that instrument!).

Veering towards more orchestral string arrangement expanses at first, 'Signal Transactions' travels into adventurous playfulness, once again led by the combination bass, e-piano and choppy guitars, with James flipping a seductive bluesy solo into the mix. The business gestures are confirmed with some amazing classical violin arrays that help the sun settle on the horizon. Speaking of which, the colossal album centrepiece 'Silence from the Storm' (it will get a HOI mix at the end, totalling over 20 minutes for the two) is without any hesitation the 'piece de resistance', a cinematic voyage in one's imagination, a fully anchored progressive rock manoeuvre with Suzy's rolling bass , Paul Sears (the Muffins) on the drum kit , James and Cook dueling once again with their respective stringed weapons of mass entertainment, while Mike and Gayle lay down torrents of organ and synths. The themes are actually complex yet thoroughly enjoyable, with elevated melodic content, a pre-requisite for enjoying this style of instrumental mayhem. This is a crowning achievement track that should garner massive applause from the prog community, as it has all the goods!

Some fascinating 'americana' with the intriguing 'The Last Words of Dutch Schultz' (a famous New York mobster, assassinated by two Murder Inc hitmen, in a restaurant). A musical whirlpool of eerie keyboards, flickering Moog from Ellett and more growling e-piano, topped off by some sweeter electric guitar flurries, set in a retro-futuristic setting as would befit the storyline. A sombre finale closes the mortuary. Dutch Schultz's final words were: 'A boy has never wept'nor dashed a thousand kim. You can play jacks, and girls do that with a soft ball and do tricks with it. Oh, oh, dog Biscuit, and when he is happy, he doesn't get snappy'. Delirium or poetry?

I have been a huge fan of Mark Cook's playing, having latched on early to both his Herd of Instinct albums as well as Spoke of Shadows, and of course collaborating with the mighty Djam Karet. On 'Terminus', this gifted multi- instrumentalist gets to whip out his whole arsenal of devices, namely his trusted Warr, fretless guitar, fretless bass, electric piano, tamboura and soundscapes. Gayle adds mellotron, Mike plays the piano and synth, and Suzy operates her guitar. It's a kaleidoscope of glittering mirrored sounds emanating from every pore of the participating musicians and is a joy to behold.

As mentioned earlier, the album finishes off with a Herd of Instinct remix of 'Silence from the Storm', with drummer Bill Bachman manning the drums, and James adding some pulsating bass to the mix. The first one was a masterpiece, this is its close cousin, with same blood, same sweat, and identical enjoyment. A fascinating recording which will enthuse the most discriminating fan and most assuredly the prog musician community as well, as this is quite a mammoth experiment in aural splendour. Do yourself a favour and get this into your collection as soon as possible.

5 theories

Review by kev rowland
4 stars Here we have the debut album from T.A.P., a multinational group of musicians who have known each other for years in one way or another, yet only recently decided to work together to create their own music. Mike Jobborn (keyboards, synth, soundscapes, drum programming), Mark Cook (Warr guitar, guitars, basses, drums, soundscapes, synths, samples, strings) and Suzi James (guitars, bass, oud, flute, percussion) play on all eight tracks while Gayle Ellett (Hammond, Moog, Mellotron) is on five and then Paul Sears and Bill Bachman add drums to one song each (although I must say the drum programming on the other tracks is much better than is often the case).

I reviewed Gayle and Mark only recently (Gayle Ellett and the Electromags), plus have known the music of Djam Karet for decades, while The Muffins (Paul Sears) is never too far away from my playlists and I reviewed the debut Fearful Symmetry (Suzi James) album a while back and Mike Jobborn and I have been FB friends for years. Knowing so many people in a band can actually be a problem at times (I am also friends with Gayle, Paul and Suzi!), as there is always the worry that if an album is not as good as one might expect how do I say that without upsetting someone? Luckily that has not happened too often, and generally we became friends in the first place because I enjoyed their work, and here we have something which is an absolute delight. There are times when the music is quite Floydian, where the instruments are blended in such a way that they rarely move above the keyboards but rather blend in to create something which is amorphic, changing and swelling as the need arises. There are others when it is more direct, but always the feeling is that this is a living and breathing stream of consciousness, something which is in motion and creating its own path as it meanders through the landscape and to fully appreciate the delights one needs to immerse oneself in the flow.

The interplay between the instruments is delicate, and there is very much the feeling this will always be a studio project just because there are so many threads being brought in and out, multiple guitars and keyboards mixing with the rhythm section, yet there are also times when people take a rest and sit back, knowing their contribution to that section of the music is not to be involved at all. This is thoughtful stuff; there has been no sense of ego or self as all those involved have put that to one side and instead have become part of a collective whole. This is not music to be played in the background but needs to be listened to on headphones when one has the time and inclination to let the rest of the world pass by. This is timeless album, and somehow feels quite modern (although wonderfully dated at times by the Hammond) yet belongs to the era when people listened to music just for its own sake as opposed to being another background noise. If that is you, then there is much here to enjoy.

Latest members reviews

3 stars I remember my dad had one of the albums by The Ventures in the family collection. It's an instrumental surf-themed rock band from the '60s. Boy, how far we've come in the instrumental rock genre! T.A.P. is a studio project featuring musicians from various parts of the world who are fluent in th ... (read more)

Report this review (#2968480) | Posted by Prog Dog | Monday, November 13, 2023 | Review Permanlink

2 stars Since T.A.P advertisted on PA for reviews, I'll oblige. I'm not familiar with any of these musicians, or their side projects, but there is no doubt that they are good. The music on "Paradigms" is instrumental psychedelic space jams. If that sounds good to you then you'll probably enjoy this album. M ... (read more)

Report this review (#2968217) | Posted by Grumpyprogfan | Saturday, November 11, 2023 | Review Permanlink

5 stars It's been a while listening to something that is far out and takes your imagination away. Too long! And I was not surprised that this was a great album, that stands out for its well done material and how it is presented, although one could say that the various sound effects at the beginning ... (read more)

Report this review (#2968089) | Posted by moshkito | Thursday, November 9, 2023 | Review Permanlink

5 stars I'll be the first reviewer to write one on their page. I'm not great at reviewing, so apologies in advance. I've listened to this on Spotify, so here we go.. (Love the album cover by the way, very dark, and love that Orange and Black contrast) 1) Infinite Names (11:57) It starts out with what ... (read more)

Report this review (#2967762) | Posted by Frets N Worries | Wednesday, November 8, 2023 | Review Permanlink

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