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Ron Geesin - As He Stands CD (album) cover


Ron Geesin


Eclectic Prog

3.85 | 7 ratings

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Special Collaborator
RIO/Avant/Zeuhl,Neo & Post/Math Teams
4 stars A symphony in three movements on one minute each. This is how Ron Geesin opens "As He Stands", but this is not (only) a joke. Those three minutes are excellent. Then we are in the usual crazyness of an author who has an enormous skill as multi instrumentist and orchestral director but decided to make experiments and release the less commercial things of the seventies.

A dialog is followed by a grotesque instrumental in the vein of "The Body", that's where the listener can gain more pleasure as the dialogs can be funny but in general don't deserve further listens.

Another minute spoken and what comes after makes me wonder why Geesin is not in Avant. "The Middle of Whose Nights?" is a piece of chamber rock between Canterbury and Zeuhl. "Wrap a Keyboard Around a Plant" is a sonic patchwork with classical piano leading. Who has liked "The Body" now knows that Waters was marginal in the composition.

A two guitar piece reminding of Fripp follows. It's incredible how all the tracks are not longer than two or three minutes. Geesin is able to get the core of an idea and concentrate it in a piece. This "Twist and Knit for Two Guitars" is a guitar lesson.

Piano ragtime. Not only Emerson does it... "Up Above My Heart" is an excellent ragtime, a bit accelerated to be a classical rag. The background keyboard sounds weird.

"A Cymbal and Much Electronics" is what the title says. Enjoy this piece of pure avantgarde followed by "To Roger Waters Wherever You Are" that should be an invective against the former friend after a broken friendship (he won't be the only one during the years...). I interpret it as a parody of "Several Species...." and of all the gimmicks, winds and breakfasts . Another minute of piano, melodic but on weird sequences of chords, very nice. A minute of genius before another avantgarde moment. A jazzy bass and a speaker followed by keyboards then speaking again and..I can't get all the story. There's harp, very different moments that underline what I think is a satiric view of the musical establishment and radios.

"Concrete Line Up" is an organ solo very psychedelic. Barrett would have surely liked it. And fans of Barrett too, I think.

"Rise Up Sebastian!" is another parody. Something "Mexican" probably, as the accent and the flamenco make me think more to sombreros than to Spain. Another spoken song with flamenco guitar and gramelot singing.

"Looming View" sounds like classic contemporary. Other two excellent minutes more.

Another ragtime closes the album, but this time it's banjo and guitar.

Of course Ron plays all the instruments.

It's not an album easy to find, but it surely deserves to stay in a collection as it's one of the few approachable works of an underrated genius.

octopus-4 | 4/5 |


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