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NeBeLNeST - ZePTO CD (album) cover





3.82 | 46 ratings

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Sean Trane
Special Collaborator
Prog Folk
4 stars Third album from this French unit that lost their guitarist in the process of recording it. Indeed Cyril Maldarez was replaced by Sebastien Carmona on some tracks, but the latter didn't stay long either, and since he has been replaced with Mathieu Sassier for touring of the album. In either case, one must be quite persistent to hear differences between the first two guitarists. Graphically (the artwork is even using the same rubbles/meteorites) and musically Zepto is a return towards the debut album and I can only applaud for Nova express was a miss for me

Gone is the extremely nihilistic and brutal sound of Nova Express: we return on better-known galaxies where the mythology themes are caught up by the Ozric space themes. The opening Pillars is probably the album's more intriguing track, somehow managing to be accessible and complex, sombre, yet involved. Majnuns continue in the vein, with the bass taking the front role, trapping most other instruments within a spiral of improvisation, which will include the fairly puzzling Boukefa's clarinet parts which induces a Moroccan ambiances that seem to be mostly disruptive for the continuity of the track. Those oriental clarinet parts come back throughout the album, but certainly at the start Old Ones, but they are quickly overrun by a metallic guitar and mellotrons accompanied by a cool jazz-rock guitar. The same oriental clarinet opens the highly ambient Fabric Of Reality and brings a foretaste of Station 9.

Among the more surprising tracks is Do What Thou Will where the groups enters free-jazz improvs under a huge Zeuhlian bass and it will drive your brains on the brink of a meltdown, before returning to a more conventional Nebelnest style. The closing Station 9 is a weird electronic rock piece that seems to hesitate between early Tangerine Dream, Kraftwerk or Kluster

This third album clearly is a step forward on the debut album and will not give itself easily to the proghead, but ultimately with repeated listening it might end up as Nebelnest's defining and definitive statement. A fine return to affair after a weaker album.

Sean Trane | 4/5 |


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