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Art Bears - The World As It Is Today CD (album) cover


Art Bears



3.96 | 77 ratings

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Sean Trane
Special Collaborator
Prog Folk
3 stars Third and last stage of the Art Bears space rocket, this World As It Is Today is definitely the apex of RIO music, flirting with Faust and "musique concrete", which is likely top have many progheads flee, even though they (AB) use a mellotron here and there. Coming with an enticing landscape artwork (later modified in reissues), this album more than picks up where the previous Winter Songs had left it off, it atomizes whatever had been done before. It took apparently two years to make and that would sound logical since there seems to be an intermediate step between WS and TWAIIT, but it's nowhere to be found, hence the two year interval.

If the preceding (and aptly titled) Winter Songs was mostly based on real "songs", while not respecting the usual format, World is definitely more complex than it or even most HC albums. Not only does the album returns to certain form of brutal anti-capitalism (in this case some song titles makes IPOL's tracks look like lullabies), but the very dissonant nature of the music make it one of the most difficult album of the closing decade (let's consider this to be with the rest of AB as 70's). Ultimately this might be the toughest AB album to understand, but it might be the most rewarding you you've mastered it, although I still have a preference for H&F

This album is more than likely THE album that influenced 5UU or Thinking Plague, so it is extremely influential and essential, but it's not an album to put between everyone's ears either, especially the stuck in their neo-comfort zone prog. Other more adventurous progheads should give it a try, because even if I don't give another star, it's definitely worth hearing but hardly certain you will like it.

Sean Trane | 3/5 |


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