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Amoeba Split - Dance of the Goodbyes CD (album) cover


Amoeba Split


Canterbury Scene

4.08 | 81 ratings

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Cesar Inca
Special Collaborator
Honorary Collaborator
4 stars This is the time to celebrate the emergence of such a lovely progressive dance in the key of 21st century Canterbury ? from Spain's Northeastern coast, Amoeba Split has delivered a beautiful album in which jazzy vibrations and melodic colorfulness fuse in an appealing dynamics. Four years was the time that Amoeba Split took to complete this album's repertoire little by little, and now "Dance Of The Goodbyes" is a brilliant reality. In the meantime, the band lost its permanent guitarist, hence becoming a quintet where the bassist adds the guitar parts on studio, except for track no. 3 that features a guest guitarist. All lyrics in the sung tracks are in English: I guess the band feels comfortable doing that. 'Dedicated to us, but we weren't listening' opens up the album with obvious softmachinesque reference in its title, but the track's actual sonic scheme is more related to Matching Mole's agile density as exhibited in the "Little Red Record": one way or another, it is an effective opener that provides good progressive hope for big pleasure in the short run to the listener. 'Perfumed garden', the first sung piece, bears a calmer mood in the beginning, full of dreamy melodic developments, but eventually things get more intense dominated by a vibrant swing and a few cosmic passages. Right before the 5 minute mark, a duet of piano and mellotron-flute signals the reprise of the last sung portion, this time augmented with flute flourishes and mellotron-cello orchestrations. With a 10 minute span, 'Turbulent matrix' develops the jazz factor more deeply, with dominant airs a-la Weather Report in many of the piano and sax interventions that occur in the interlude section. For a while, during the second half, the band indulges in a sort of homage to "Volume Two"-era SM, but finally the coda states a reshaping of the initial motif. This is a highlight of the album, no doubt about it, as is 'Blessed water' as well. This one, the second sung track, brings an overall romantic vibe to a tale of moral disappointment and desperation for faith. This track's compositional development benefits from gradual crescendos of colorfulness that are properly fuelled by the alternated guitar and woodwind solos. Picture a Robert Wyatt ballad rearranged and performed by a combo of Caravan and Catapilla musicians and you might get the picture about this song's structure. 'Qwerty' is a brief instrumental based on a few letters on old typewriter's panels: it isn't even one minute long but it clearly delivers exciting moods that are heavily inspired by the Hatfield & The North mold. Mostly, 'Qwerty' is a preamble to the epic 23+ minute long 'Flight to nowhere'. After a brief psychedelic intro theme, the first sung section is a melodic expression of serene simplicity, soon followed by a Caravan-style jam (featuring an excellent flute solo by Miss Toro). With the next jam, things get much more vivacious with a featured position of the guitar and sax solos. Then, a softer section, very symphonic in itself, brings pastoral nuances that stand closer to PFM than, say, National Health. Later on, after a reasonable time for development of this new found symphonic groove, the jazz-prog orientation is retaken in full swing in order to elaborate a partial climax that serves as the anticipation to the following sung section. The stage is set for yet another climatic moment, with the whole instrumental framework focused on the powerfully stated organ layers and rhythmic dynamics. At the 21 minute mark, the music stops drastically for the eerie emergence of soft heartbeats and lifeline machinery? and then, silence. The last thing of this suite and this album is not such silence, but an unsettling piano solo that somehow brings a variation of the same intensity with which the music had stopped earlier. A very clever ending for a very good closure to a great album: Amoeba Split nailed it big time with this debut album, the first dance.
Cesar Inca | 4/5 |


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