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Estradasphere Quadropus album cover
3.04 | 25 ratings | 6 reviews | 8% 5 stars

Good, but non-essential

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Studio Album, released in 2003

Songs / Tracks Listing

1. Mekapses Yitonisa (4:22)
2. Dubway (3:39)
3. King Krab Battle (8:31)
4. Speck (4:34)
5. Hardball (13:40)
6. A Car Ride In Idealitic Ethiopia (5:47)
7. Crystal Blue (3:40)
8. Jungle Warfare (5:42)
9. Body Slam (3:09)
10. At Least We'd Have Today (9:40)

Total Time: 62:37


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Music tabs (tablatures)

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Line-up / Musicians

- Timb Harris / violin, viola, trumpet, guitar, mandolin, turkish mandolin, vocals, percussion
- Jason Schimmel / guitars (electric, acoustic, baritone), banjo, organ, piano, synths, harpsichord, vocals, percussion, beatboxing
- Tim Smolens / bass (electric, upright), bari guitar, piano, synths, violin/viola/cello, vocals, percussion
- John Whooley / saxophones, flute, vocals, beaboxing, organ

Additional musicians:
- Timb & Ben Blechman / violins
- Sarah Hart / viola
- Aria DiSalvio / cello
- Timb, Val Hall & Richard Karst / trumpets
- Scott Harris / trombone
- Luke Kirley / bass trombone
- John Whooley, Joel Ford, Scott Norgren, Paul Tarantino & Wes Anthony / saxophones
- John Thomas / tuba
- Horn section (3)
- String quartet (4 & 10)

Releases information

Release in October 28, 2003 by Mimicry
Producer Tim Smolens, Jason Schimmel, Andrew Kapner

Thanks to licantropho for the addition
and to ProgLucky for the last updates
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Buy ESTRADASPHERE Quadropus Music

Palace of Mirrors LivePalace of Mirrors Live
Multiple Formats
The End Records 2007
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The End Records 2006
Audio CD$6.77
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Passion for LifePassion for Life
Mimicry 2004
Audio CD$15.74
$9.97 (used)
Mimicry 2003
Audio CD$349.99
$25.00 (used)
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ESTRADASPHERE Quadropus ratings distribution

(25 ratings)
Essential: a masterpiece of progressive rock music(8%)
Excellent addition to any prog rock music collection(44%)
Good, but non-essential (44%)
Collectors/fans only (4%)
Poor. Only for completionists (0%)

ESTRADASPHERE Quadropus reviews

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

Collaborators/Experts Reviews

Review by Sean Trane
3 stars As the title would have you guess, this is group's fourth album (although one of them is an EP), the now quartet is left without a drummer, even if the departing Dave Murray fills in when needed. The quartet develops their usual ethnic-sounding Avant-prog with the gypsy/East European blatant influences dominating some tracks and much more subtle on others. Their brand of Avant-prog is wide-scoped with pure folk (the opening Greek trad piece) with some wild horns (such as King Krab Battle, my fave), mixes quite easily electric and acoustic instruments, a twist of Flamenco (in the lengthy Hardball), some early (almost doo-wop) RnR (Crystal Blue), some Death/Black/Trash-metal (Jungle Warfare the bad Bodyslam) and rather surprising, it is sung, which is not that often the case.

Although Estradasphere's music is a bit out of the ordinary, it is also nothing groundbreaking, being a cross between some of Quebec's Avant (Miriodor, Rouge Ciel), some of Sweden's Avant-folk (In The Labyrinth and Ensemble Nimbus), Finland's crazy scene (Alamaailman Vasarat and Uzva or Belgium (Cro-Magnon). But nevertheless this is a very good album, with some often-excellent moments, but on the whole it is just another Avant-prog album, with its shares of surprises, but they are not necessarily good.

After this album, wind player Whooley will leave the group, being replaced by two new members making the next album with a very different line up: a sextet where the remaining Harris, Schimmel and Smolens are only half of the group. As for this album, I can't help but feeling that the group is out for a too demonstrative representation of their "huge abilities" and passe-partout easiness, in short: a bit of a show-off attitude that actually un-serves them a bit.


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Send comments to Sean Trane (BETA) | Report this review (#117290) | Review Permalink
Posted Wednesday, April 04, 2007

Review by laplace
2 stars To this reviewer, despite them employing a great cast of multi-instrumentalists and touching on positive influences - particularly Zappa, Oingo Boingo, rock Andaluz and the traditional folk music of any number of countries - Estradasphere's releases always seem like tastelessly absurd and eclectic compilations; in order to enjoy their albums you would need to share their peculiar senses of humour as well as have a taste for their distinctly hit and miss music. Quadropus is no different and there's barely a recognisable thread to the songs to suggest they need to occupy the same CD - had they been released as singles, Estradasphere would look markedly less avant-garde. ;P

The individual tracks are somewhat less experimental than the audaciously assorted way they are presented as a package; the upbeat folk song that serves as an opener is initially refreshing but simply poodles along the same sequence, gradually tiring in vibrancy until its close. Next we have a pseudo-techno-pop vignette seemingly crafted entirely from vocal samples - this song, as well as not being very good the first time and downright tiring on repeat plays, requires that you're in on the Estradasphere all-embracing genre joke. Basically the instrumental version of Weird Al.

"King Krab Battle" is a great piece of filmic orchestral (if medieval) marching score morphing into brassy funk-rock and although it dips somewhat around halfway in, it's the first piece on "Quadropus" that manages to hold this reviewer's attention. An album with tunes like this one throughout would be a much more satisfying listen than the somewhat frustrating pick'n'mix Estradasphere have assembled for us, as evidenced by the next two dire tracks, being a short, inexpertly-sung twelve-string ballad and a woefully overextended piece of ethnic jazz-rock which mostly serves as a bed for a solo that doesn't quite manage to take off.

And so it goes on; an album that offers up one homogenised genre after another yet doesn't allow you to settle thanks to the disjointedness of the whole affair. If you're looking for a CD of stand-alone songs from various genres, each somewhat simplified and made more approachable, then an album by a band such as Estradasphere or Secret Chiefs 3 would be an acceptable purchase - but aren't we already at saturation point with countless Zappa albums, Mr. Bungle's "California" and the more nuanced works of Miriodor? Distinctly second tier.


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Send comments to laplace (BETA) | Report this review (#136330) | Review Permalink
Posted Wednesday, September 05, 2007

Latest members reviews

3 stars Well boys, mark this one down as one of the 'must get' bands of modern prog. Neither they sounds like a clone of an earlier band; rather a mixture of different elements that all come together well. They are classed under 'Avant-RIO', admittedly a genre I don't know a lot about, but using d ... (read more)

Report this review (#338976) | Posted by Brendan | Tuesday, November 30, 2010 | Review Permanlink

3 stars Can you unscramble an egg? This is the question Estradasphere has been posed, or at least try to answer, on their Quadropus (with a wicked picture of the green 'pus fellow on the cover). This cover does look cool, and reminds me of some sort of jade ruin stone, or amulet, something epic-looki ... (read more)

Report this review (#159596) | Posted by cookieacquired | Wednesday, January 23, 2008 | Review Permanlink

3 stars Estradasphere's 3rd (or 4th, if you count their EP) release is the last we will have with Dave Murray and John Whooley, which leaves the band much at a loss for members. While this album certainly isn't bad, it lacks the flare and creativity of their first 2 CDs. While there are some wonderfu ... (read more)

Report this review (#141058) | Posted by Drakk | Saturday, September 29, 2007 | Review Permanlink

4 stars I am really pleased with this album. This was my first Estradaspere album on my list and i have to say i am happy with it. Although i have heard other songs by them before this album that were on Buck Fever that i really enjoyed, i liked the way they took this album. Soft, it had feeling and l ... (read more)

Report this review (#121351) | Posted by fungusucantkill | Tuesday, May 08, 2007 | Review Permanlink

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