Z-Axis - Music From Reality Check

Year of Release: 2000
Label: Gnosis Productions
Catalog Number: n/a
Format: CD
Total Time: 69:10:00

Reality Check is a multi-media extravaganza created in 1997. This show-piece is currently touring throughout the US. Fascinated by avant-garde dance and performance art, Z-Axis leader and keyboard player Allen Welty-Green founded the artistic cooperation Gnosis. Already from the opening sequence in "Name Your Poison" you can detect Green's enthusiasm for the current King Crimson. As part of a big multi-media adventure, the music of course is very important, and gets its influences from Philip Glass, Steve Reich, Laurie Anderson, Peter Gabriel and even Ozric Tentacles.

Gathered from his journeys around the world drummer Phil Hart introduces a remarkable collection of percussion instruments (listen to "Suspension" as proof), whilst bass player Jeff Tyson sometimes attacks his bass guitar with a bow or with drumsticks. As an extra sound, the guitar and e-bow from Mark Baker are introduced, adding some Talking Heads and Robert Fripp influences to the unique blend.

Avant-garde fusion in the footsteps of Weather Report and Mahavishnu Orchestra perfectly links up with the new wave from the eighties. "Holy Ground" is simply brilliant, getting close to ambient and the "cosmic school." Because drummer Phil Hart plays both acoustic and electronic drums, that new wave connection is apparent such as in a track like "Sky Song." The fact that the z-Axis music is used for a dance project can clearly be heard in "Silhouettes," which holds all the elements to combine movement and music into one. This doesn't mean you won't be able to enjoy the music without the visuals! However a DVD release of this project might not be such a bad idea. "Ebb and Flow" combines Andres Vollenweider with Celtic influences whilst "In The Country Of The Blind, The One-eyed Man Is King" is pure minimalistic, evolving into a rhythmic tour de force. With "Homecoming" the band slows down a bit in order to end this superb album with the showpiece "Slat Dance". Nearly 70 minutes of superb new music, parts of which you can hear at www.gnosisarts.org/z/cd.html

Name Your Poison (4:44) / Slow Glass (6:23) / Emperor's Cascade (6:49) / Holy Ground (3:46) / Sky Song (6:50) / Silhouettes (5:01) / Ebb & Flow (4:48) / Suspension (8:48) / In The Country Of The Blind, The One-Eyed Man Is King (10:15) / Homecoming (6:20) / Slat Dance (5:26)

Mark Baker - guitars, e-bow & devices
Jeff Tyson - bass, percussion, devices
Philip Hart - electric and acoustic percussion
Allen Welty-Green - keyboards, programming, percussion

Music From Reality Check (2000)

Genre: Progressive Rock

Origin US

Added: July 25th 1999
Reviewer: John "Bobo" Bollenberg

Artist website: www.gnosisarts.org/z/
Hits: 1419
Language: english


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