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Magma - Köhntarkösz CD (album) cover





4.15 | 490 ratings

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4 stars The instrumental MEKANIK DESTRUKTIW KOMMANDOH in a sense.

Magma had a thing going for them on MDK; putting out an album that is nothing more than an operetta that focused on blending the esoteric qualities of classical, jazz and opera with the punch and dancability of rock. They're still doing that here on KOHNTARKOSZ, but there's a noticeable difference; the vocals aren't as abrasive.

That vocal chanting was one of MDK's strengths, but here on KOHNTARKOSZ, those vocals are mostly wordless. Don't get me wrong, they're tremendous, but they're nothing like the intensity of those Kobaian chants on tracks like ''Da Zeuhl Wortz Mekanik'', no ''wii wii ess ess'' to sing along to. The quality of the music is the name of the game here.

This is probably the perfect second chance for those that couldn't soak up MDK as it seems like the strange chanting was what turned people off on that album. But, the music here is pretty faithful to what MDK did keeping the biting piano, epic bass and overall haunting atmosphere, at least on the title epic. This piece is not something you're supposed do dance to; in my mind, it's supposed to scare the whatzits out of you.

The problem with the direction shift is that now Magma makes their repetitions boring almost by complete accident. This is mostly a problem on the first part as the theme, while thundering, moves too slushily for me to retain attention throughout its entirety. The second part really changes that by beginning with one of the best piano lines anywhere leading into the main theme which builds on itself by slowly speeding up for about ten minutes until some worded vocals come in....that moment is euphoria in music. It makes me want to scream ''YEEEEEEEEEEEAAAAAAHHHHHHHHH!!!!!!!!!!!!!!'' at that point as everything that came before suddenly makes total sense. This is the sign of a great composition, a long buildup to a climax well worth the wait.

As for the other two tracks, ''Ork Alarm'' makes me think of very scary gothic music with cellos and ''Coltrane Sundia'' is nothing more than a soft piano ballad in memoriam of the saxophonist. In any case, this Magma is toned down from the Magma on the previous album, which is a good thing if you couldn't get into the band.

Sinusoid | 4/5 |


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