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Upsilon Acrux - Radian Futura CD (album) cover


Upsilon Acrux



4.86 | 9 ratings

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Cesar Inca
Special Collaborator
Honorary Collaborator
5 stars "Radian Futura" is the title of the new Upsilon Acrux installment: this 2009 release is really exciting, certainly fresh and unequivocally powerful. I have just discovered this band in the last two weeks, but by now I'm a converted. Those who already are acquainted with and enjoy Don Caballero, 'In-A-Gadda-Devito' kicks off the album with a weird combination of (as paradoxical as it surely seems) finesse and roughness: the crazy, frantic twists that the track assumes right from the starting point are immaculately driven on the wings of the impossible rhythmic developments delivered by the drummer. The softer passages are somehow related to the experimental side of early Primus - this is an ultimate expression of intricacy at the service of humor. 'Prelude to Foreshadow'n' bears a more texturial drive as well as a heavier trreatment of teh guitar riffs, still the extravagant overtones abound gracefully. I kind of notice some Don Caballero relatedness in the way Upsilon Acrux handles the varying syncopated architecture in which the central riffs are ordained. Two shorter tracks follow: 'Landscape With Gun and Chandelier' states an agile dynamics that eventually gets excruciatingly neurotic for the last passage; 'Keeping Rice Evil' is less crazy, becoming a fine exercise on jazz-driven math rock. Now, track 5 is the monster piece - 'Trasparent Seas', which lasts 28+ minutes and bears the very ironic subtitle 'Radio Edit', is a tour-de-force that exemplifies the epic extremes of avant-garde rock. The colorful tension and menacing dynamics delivered by the exhaustive instrumentation take center stage right from the start, robustly flirting with the deepest ends of extravagance. At times, the synth creates some featured room for it to display some cosmic ornaments and caustic lines in order to add a spacey mood to the overall journey. Some elastic twisting moods are stated in a way that Zappa would have loved to include in the most bizarre passages of his 80s albums. Around the 10 , the spirit of a surreal circus takes hold of the general ambience and inspires the musicians to create a crescendo of merry folly. Once this momentary climax is over, it doesn't take long before the turn for an incendiary drum solo arrives. Chris Meszler is absolutely terrific. And so, the show goes on with this track, and it feels like the various motifs are filled with a more extroverted mood, albeit the experimental craziness remains intact in its uncompromising drive. Near the end, the band indulges in a couple of cacophonic motifs, in this way instilling a sophisticated tension that aims at being mesmeric in an aggressive way. The final moments with only drum kit, synth and bass cleverly complete the last guitar inputs. The album's closer 'The Infinitesimal Fractions of Ping & Pong' is a brief, eerie multiple guitars' soundscape installed on a rhythm machine - very krautrockish, indeed, yet with a post-rock nuance that makes it as dreamy as it is weird. "Radian Futura" is, at the end of the day, a delightful art-rock surprise that is there to be properly praised by all fervent lovers of experimental rock.
Cesar Inca | 5/5 |


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