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CD/DVD Releases: Musea Releases For February

Posted on Saturday, February 18 @ 23:15:00 UTC by nightowl

Musea Records' latest slate of releases consist of 12 titles from Gonzo Multimedia (aka Voiceprint), Q-biq's - Céleste and Peter Hammill's Pno. Gtr. Vox. Box - Eighty-Four Live Performances.

Let's begin this retelling with that Hammill set: The double-album Pno. Gtr. Vox., released in September 2011, drew on live performances from concerts in Japan and the UK in 2010 and showed Peter Hammill at the peak of his powers, pushing and stretching both himself and the material into and out of shape. It followed a matrix originally set down in the Tokyo shows: one set was of piano songs only, the other of guitar only.

Pno. Gtr. Vox. Box is a limited edition (2000 copies only), deluxe box-set which greatly expands on the original double, both CDs of which are included. Five additional discs make up the set. Two complete the "Tokyo Themes": one a set of Van Der Graaf Generator songs, the other a set imagining "What if I knew this was the last show I'd ever do?" Other sets are "Songs I didn't play in Japan," "Songs I dropped from the setllists," and "The best alternate versions." Each CD comes in a glossy wallet featuring photographs from Peter Hammill's personal collection of dressing room and way-to-the-stage shots and the box is completed with a 24 page-booklet. This is a classy piece of work and serves not only as a testament to The artist's current performances but also, by the nature of the fact that songs are taken from all stages of his career, as a significant retrospective collection.

Q-biq - Céleste: Novelty prevails throughout the nine tracks of Q-biq's Céleste. Indeed, inventiveness appears to be the prime mover in this uncommonly-structured album. Without denying their early influences (e.g. Return To Forever, Headhunters, Tribal Tech) Q-biq, here, make a sort of romantic breach which might reconcile fans of Scott Henderson with Frederic Chopin. While the title-track "Racine" was the lead-tune on the group's first album, the 3-part track, here, titled "L'éléphant, comes on top as the number likely to arouse marvel. As a majestic keystone, the lyricism of the vocals sung by Françoise Mazza is truly thrilling. Guitarist Julien Froment, after the fashion of one Brian May, delivers phrasings both high-pitched and ringing. It takes Antonin Neel's genius, on keyboards, to calm down that maelstrom fueled by a terrific rhythm section made up of Emmanuel Pastor on drums and of David Depassiot on bass. Though you may be enthralled by this number, the album's other tracks should by no means be second-rated. Let us mention, among other wonders: "Frederic" and its heart-rending outcome, as well as the raging "Distorted Time," not forgetting "Microcosm," a subtle and refined tune. In a more lively register, "Agathe The Blues" and "Boogie Or Not Boogie" will no doubt satisfy lovers of binary trips. The former is a tremendous, colourful display of riffs leading to some amazing architectural guitar breaks. As for the latter, it takes the listener into a blaze of white bubbling madness. Last but not least, "Quarks," a kind of groovy ballad gradually developing into a feverish jam, remarkably demonstrates the Quartet's skill in combining melody elements with rich and unexpected harmonies.

And so... on to those Gonzo titles: Jon Anderson & Rick Wakeman - The Living Tree In Concert - Part One, Andi Sex Gang - Perception In The Heart Of Darkness - The Best Of, Al Atkins & Paul May - The Serpent's Kiss, Atomic Rooster - The Lost Broadcasts, Cado Belle - Cado Belle, Jeff Green - Jessica, three 2-disc sets from Hawkwind - Free Festivals - The Weird Tapes No. 3/Live 1978 - The Weird Tapes No. 4, Live 1976 & 1977 - The Weird Tapes No. 5/Live 1970 & 1973 - The Weird Tapes No. 6 and The Dave Brock Demos - The Weird Tapes No. 7/Live 1966-1973 - The Weird Tapes No. 8, My Name Is Janet - Red Room Blue [No, I don't think it's Ms. Jackson if... -ed.], Soul Secret - Closer To Daylight and Third Ear Band - The Lost Broadcasts

[Source: Musea Records]

Posted in Album Release News