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The Wrong Object - Into The Herd CD (album) cover


The Wrong Object


Jazz Rock/Fusion

3.89 | 78 ratings

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5 stars The Wrong Object is a jazz fusion band from Belgium that was founded in 2002. They started out as a Frank Zappa cover band, and, if they were able to actually pull that off, then you know they must have been talented. Since 2007, they have released five studio albums, the fifth one being 'Into the Herd' released early in 2019. Their current lineup consists of 6 regular members; Michel Delville on guitar and electronics, Marti Melia on saxes and clarinets, Francois Lourtie also on sax, Antoine Guenet on keyboards, Damien Campion on bass, and Laurent Delchambre on drums, electronics and samples.

The title track 'Into the Herd' starts things off with a grumbling bass line and some great percussion, and is later joined by the brass. The sound is definitely progressive jazz, tricky rhythms and really cool improvisation that is definitely reminiscent of Zappa's style of jazz. The saxes play nicely along and against each other with some contrasting harmony with everything offset with the heavy bass. 'A Mercy' is a more laid back affair with clarinet and baritone sax playing almost in tandem even with the rapidly played notes that sound like they should be improvised, but are not. Later, a nice mellow guitar solo comes in accented by the talented drummer. A keyboard solo follows, the overall feel of the track remaining somewhat mellow.

'Rumble Buzz' has an interesting electronic riff that introduces everything before the guitar comes in for a rip roaring solo right off the top. A squawky sax comes in later as the bass and drums keep up with the tricky rhythms. A sudden change of direction calms things down a bit as keys take over while the brass spouts off chords. The bass then takes us into a sax solo as the drums do their own smashing and crashing around it all. The rhythm speeds up and slows down as everyone keeps up before returning to the main complex theme. 'Another Thing' is introduced with an odd sax fanfare which gets joined by a heavy guitar. A wailing electronic sound and a mellotron effect join together when things quiet down a bit. Then a choppy brass section bring in a sudden chaotic guitar improvisation. Dynamics continue to get used quite wisely and effectively as the track moves from chaotic to soft and smooth, it is quite an intriguing contrast throughout. Later, things intensify when the twin saxes play off of and against each other and bring it all to a climactic end.

'Filmic' uses the mellower clarinet against the sax playing the same tricky riff together, definitely giving off shades of Zappa. The bass takes over playing a nice solo, then the guitar, sax, keys and everything just start creating a strange, almost experimental section and then the music suddenly goes into an upbeat and catchy section, interrupted occasionally by progressive outbursts which all builds up to a really great clarinet solo. This changes to a keyboard improvisation later with a bit of funk added in for good measure.

'Mango Juice' begins dark and mysterious with a bit of dissonance between the saxes, the guitar and keyboards. There is a bit of a build until electronic tones contrast against the heavy bottom end created by guitars. The electronic improvisation is definitely something that was not expected. The track continues to plod along with a dark feeling as brass comes back in later and then a heavy guitar solo. After 6 minutes, there is a shift to a more tropical feeling as keys and brass bring things up into the light as everyone plays contrasting melodic lines that eventually all come together. 'Many Lives' starts off with a quiet piano, soon joined by the saxes, then the drums usher in everything else until a melody and meter is found and all of the instruments find their parts. This same formula repeats a 2nd time and then a 3rd time with variations.

'Ship of Fools' starts right off with the whole band playing a great rock fusion sound, with a start / stop style, going from being in tandem to doing their own thing. This slips into a rocking sax solo. There is a change in rhythm to a looser feel and another sax solo follows. Later, the guitar takes over the melody as things tighten up to a heavier feel against the brightness of vibes. Everything gets wrapped up in the final track 'Psithurism' as the horns have the lead first playing a theme, then taking turns with short solos against an upbeat rhythm section. The theme returns, followed by a keyboard solo. Suddenly chaos ensues as the saxes go crazy before returning to the theme.

By the time this album is over, there is no doubt who their main influence is. There are many times in this album that you could swear that Zappa is there playing or conducting everything as the band seems to play off cues of when to play a rapid fire theme in tandem, or go off on different tangents and taking turns soloing. This is a very talented band that it is shocking that they are going unnoticed. This is also one of the best progressive jazz fusion bands and albums that I have heard for quite a while. This album is definitely an excellent discovery, and if you are into instrumental jazz / rock fusion, with the leaning closer to jazz than rock, with a lot of progressive jazz mixed in, then this is one you should be checking out.

TCat | 5/5 |


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