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Vantomme - Vegir CD (album) cover




Jazz Rock/Fusion

3.51 | 7 ratings

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4 stars An enigmatic experience!

Once again I want to thank Leonardo Pavkovic for introducing me to musicians with huge talent that had not crossed my ears before. This time is Dominique Vantomme, a Belgian musician who (from what I've read) has dedicated big part of his life to music, being piano his main weapon. He shares credits in this new album with Michel Delville and Maxime Lenssens, two countrymen, and also with the legendary Tony Levin. The four men create here a quite enigmatic album that spreads the likes of jazz, electronic soundscapes with some psych nuances and rock. It is an instinctive record in which improvisation has the baton, so the four are free to explore each other's intentions.

Though (in my opinion) is a bit long and maybe not easy to dig, once you are into it, the music will do the rest. Eight mid-to-long tracks give us that opportunity to explore different musical routes in one single album in which the four musicians are equally important but under Vantonne's direction. Since the opener 'Double Down' we can embrace those infinite textures that may take us back to the 70's but with the experimental heart of improvs from this current millennium. 'Equal Minds' starts with a soft jazzy-spacey sound, very relaxing. After a couple of minutes the mini-moog enters in a soft way, but its presence is very noticeable. The psych spirit here is evident and will take you into a satisfying trip that has an explosive ending.

All the songs have a complete different sound, an example is 'Sizzurp'. Great drums making the rhythm while keyboards create a sound alike to theremin that puts a kind of sinister sound. Then it completely changes, becoming much rockier and experimental. You don't really know what comes next, the band keeps surprising you while the seconds pass, and that's great! In fact, I am far from describing the whole track's length, it is better if you discover it and create your own verdict. In 'Playing Chess with Barney Rubble' we listen to Levin's bass as the main character, with a somber atmosphere and unstoppable drums, then keyboards enter here and there and thee four musicians take off to different places but land in the same ground. There is a totally jazzy part here, and then with the changes you are still part of a trip to unknown lands.

'The Self-Licking Ice Cream Come' is the longest track and I believe here the band decided to develop the jazziest groove of them all, I mean, in the 13 minutes we can enjoy different changes, but the jazz essence will overtake the sound. Vantomme's solos are also wonderful, and better when it opens the gates for Delville to share also some. 'Plutocracy' is an interesting song with an experimental sound that blends rock with electronic music, flirting even with new-age. There is a dark feeling in some moments and a blast of energy lost in the air, you decide whether to catch it or not.

'Agent Orange' opens with Levin's stick and it is impossible not to remember some Crimson passages. Then the other musicians join and start building new textures and creating a dark atmosphere, maybe some chaos lives there, but it will end sooner than later. The album finishes with 'Emmetropia' has a slow start but little by little the musicians develop new atmospheres; you might feel lost in some moments, but then you will find a comfortable place to stay. In fact, I think this could happen in the whole album because their freedom to improv and create countless atmospheres will transmit you different feelings.

A very interesting jam indeed, yet another positive experience with the Moonjune family. Check it out!

memowakeman | 4/5 |


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