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Arnaud Bukwald - La Marmite Cosmique 4 CD (album) cover


Arnaud Bukwald


Eclectic Prog

3.77 | 7 ratings

From, the ultimate progressive rock music website

4 stars Frenchman Arnaud Bukwald is back with this year's (first) installment of La marmite cosmique and, as usual, it's a rollercoaster ride through nostalgic prog styles. With only two songs over three minutes long, it serves as a bit of a challenge to get a grip on what the master of imitation is trying to accomplish, but the one 14-minute epic makes it all worthwhile--and is sure to end up on my year-end list of favorite prog epics.

1. "brats" (2:11) stage piano and female voice make this one sound like a setup for a vaudeville song, but Arnaud's Frank Zappa-like voice and the quirky anti-pop song that develops says otherwise. A lyric Frank would be proud of. (4.5/5)

2. "gravelax de spleen" (14:16) another one of Arnaud's masterpieces that crossover several subgenres of prog rock. With the atmospheric, spacey opening section (0:00-2:30) I thought I was in for some Kosmische Musik, but the it goes full Jazz Fusion (both Canterburian and a little avant garde) (2:30-5:06) before seguing into a gorgeous, slow, emotional, SOFT MACHINE section (5:07- 7:11) (with some lovely flute playing) before returning to the faster, upbeat Canterbury music of Section II (8:01- 9:50), cycling back to the slow, emotional themes and styles of Section III (9:52- 11:57) (I love the Hammond, brush play on the drum kit, and the upright bass!) and then ending in a kind of Stefano Musso/ALIO DIE tuned percussion display for the final section (12:00-14:16). Awesome and beautiful song! One of my favorites of the year (so far)! (10/10)

3. "bromridrosis" (2:28) stylistically and lyrically this sounds like a FRANK ZAPPA song though there are elements that remind me of MAJOR PARKINSON, too. The vocal contributions of female singer Geneviève Palley are quite welcome. Definitely the funky side of Frank Z.... (4.5/5)

4. "polymorphous roach" (2:44) a "horn"-supported jazz set up for ancient keyboard exposition (Hammond, Fender Rhodes, and synths). (4.5/5)

5. "mont de venus" (1:53) opening with a bit of a circus/carnival music sound, the title suggests Anaïs Nin while the music weaves more into a PHILLIP GLASS spiral--though the odd second fade out of xylophone soloing catches one off guard. (4/5)

6. "rumpology" (6:42) The study of rumps. Cute. Though this song opens up much like the B horror movie "soundtrack" music of bands like ATOMC APE, the music turns, in the second minute, into an experimental Berlin School type that I never really particularly enjoyed (Todd Rundgren played in this way a lot, as well): fragments of noise and sound experiments strung together in a seemingly random way. Perhaps this music represents more the study of toilet flushing. (7.5/10)

4.5 stars; a wonderful collection of very well produced songs that any prog lover would love to hear for its great sound, compositional genius, and nostalgic effect. Still, 30 minutes of music is a bit short to be considered for album of the year.

P.S. Nice album cover!

BrufordFreak | 4/5 |


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