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Omar Rodriguez-Lopez - The Apocalypse Inside of an Orange CD (album) cover


Omar Rodriguez-Lopez


Eclectic Prog

4.14 | 99 ratings

From, the ultimate progressive rock music website

4 stars Wow! Combining high-powered, psychedelic rock and R & B like I've never heard it, Omar Rodriquez-Lopez--of THE MARS VOLTA fame--has created a monster of an album. Almost completely instrumental and, except for the guitar work and modern recording techniques, very reminiscent of lots of music and artists from the jazz fusion and electronic prog experimentalists fromt he 1970s.

1. "Melting Chariots" (3:51) starts off like something from a P-Funk album or TALKING HEADS' Remain in Light. The unusual staccato guitar solo is a quite inconsistent with the rest of the song's feel and sound. (8/10)

2. "Knee Deep in the Loving Hush of Heresy" (6:02) begins with ORNETTE COLEMAN-like free-for-all cacophony. The just as suddenly the music settles into a groove--an almost tongue-in-cheek 'sexy space' walk. The song flows intermmittently in and out of the opening cacophony, as well as into some stark bluesy sections. This sounds a lot like some of TODD RUNDGREN's wild sound/listener experiments from the 70s. The 'sexy space walk' jam is the overall dominant thread that keeps the song moving forward but there are many 'pauses' and 'interludes' into guitar and synthesizer 'tangents.' The song ends with a minute of straightforward heavy metal rock n roll. Interesting sonic and technical experimentation. (8/10)

3. "Jacob Van Lennepkade II" (18:25) is a wonderful multi-track (midi?) jam set over a very engaging, danceable groove laid down by the rhythm section. The occasional 'chorus' section is lead by saxophone melody--all the while the rhythm section keeps on groovin' away on the same pace, same riffs, same chords. The first five minutes are dominated by guitar(s) solo; second five by keyboard(s), third five by saxophone; and the final by guitars again. Awesome performances throughout. Great jam. (10/10)

4. "Fuerza de Liberacion" (5:33) begins with some odd synthesizer and vocal percussion 'noises.' At the one minute mark most of this fades away to be replaced by a kind of steady 'Carribbean' beat over which a heavily muted/treated male voice talks for over two minutes. Giving way to a multi-track guitar solo, beneath which the drummer--and then the keyboardist and saxophone player--has some real fun. The song's basic bass and keyboard structure remains steady and constant throughout. (8/10)

5. "Sparked From the Insult List" (6:08) is pure Latin groove rock--SANTANA at his jammin' best. Again, multi-track guitar (by which I mean that one guitar is being played but that it's sound is being channelled through two or more effects boxes and then into multiple recording tracks, giving it the feel that multiple instruments are being played). The presence of Rhodes-like keyboard and flute give this a very 1970s feel. Awesome feel and sound--one I can never get enough of. (10/10)

6. "Baby Fat" (2:47) has a very jazzy, KING CRIMSON feel to it--even down to the discordant free jam the song devolves into. (8/10)

7. "The Apocalypse Inside of An Orange" (11:14) is a true adventure in Psychedelic/Space Rock--even down to the "Indian" feel of the 'sitar' and bass sounds--a musical expression of pre-Big Bang (or post-apocalyptic) cosmic soup. It's actually quite entertaining and even engaging. (Again I am reminded of some of TODD RUNDGREN's work from the 70s--this time almost exactly like the middle 30 minutes of his 36 minute epic, "Treatise on Cosmic Fire"on Initiation). I quite like it! (9/10)

8. "Coma Pony" (6:36) is another throwback song, starting with a very cool, laid back jazz fusion (almost trip hoppy) groove set down by bass, drums, and very 60s/70s keyboard sound and style--over which the guitar again does his multi-track jamming. The ERIC GALE- like jazz guitar, BOB JAMES-like keyboard playing, TOM SCOTT/GROVER WASHINGTON- like sax play, and catchy melodies make this a very enjoyable and comfortable song--like a stroll through memory lane. (10/10)

Truly an exceptional album of adventurous music. Close to being a masterpiece; definitely 4.5 stars.

BrufordFreak | 4/5 |


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