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Catapilla - Catapilla CD (album) cover




Eclectic Prog

3.48 | 122 ratings

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Prog Reviewer
5 stars One of those early progressive albums that positively drips with a hazy, late-sixties vibe, the debut album from little-known jazz-influenced outfit Catapilla is an underrated little gem blending elements of jazz, avant-garde folk, heavy prog and psychedelia to strange yet highly satisfying effect. Seven-strong, Catapilla's line-up featured Robert Calvert(no, not that one; Sax), Hugh Eaglestone(sax), Malcolme Frith(drums), Anna Meek(vocals), Thierry Reinhart(wind instruments), Graham Wilson(guitar) and David Taylor(bass), most of whom would re-appear on the groups second, and final, album 'Changes' a year later. With only four songs, this self-titled effort features a dense, multi-layered sonic tapestry of sounds, falling almost halfway between the jazz-flecked epics of Frank Zappa's more adventurous pieces and the fuzzy jazz-fusion of Nucleus and Soft Machine. The difference, however, are the deliberately manic vocals of Anna Meek, who squawks, sings, screams, howls and hollers her way right through the album in a show of pure, unbridled passion that needs to be heard to be (dis)believed. Of the four tracks - all are great - it is the final, firey epic 'Embryonic Fusion'(what a name) that finds the group at their most adventurous, the bleating saxophones, edgy guitars and skittering drums creating a swirling, almost mystical jazz journey that brings to mind the more eclectic works of Miles Davis, Herbie Hancock et al, though with a hard-rock edge that soaks everything with a late-night effect often found in the best of cool jazz. Highly recommended to all fusion fans as well as lovers of classic progressive rock, this debut album is a wonderfully obscure relic from bygone days. Enjoy.


stefro | 5/5 |


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