METAL-O-PHONE — Metal-o-phone... (review)

METAL-O-PHONE — Metal-o-phone... album cover Album · 2009 · Eclectic Fusion Buy this album from MMA partners
3/5 ·
snobb
Metal-o-phone is a French trio founded by vibraphonist Benjamin Flament (member of Radiation 10, Les Bonbons Flingueurs, White Light 4tet,etc). This debut (and only) album is a great illustration of his idea to use the vibraphone as a core instrument for playing a mix of repetitive rhythms, free jazz improvs, rock riffs and harmonic distortions.

Two other band members are Belgian bassist and Jean Louis/ Radiation 10 co-founder Joachim Florent, and drummer Elie Duris. As many French avant-garde/improv based bands, Metal-o-phone's music is strongly influenced by Magma/zeuhl legacy: tribal drumming, dark atmosphere and Teutonic calculated spirit are the main components, another serious influence is Steve Reich.

While listeners may be divided between ecstatic zeuhl fans and haters of the genre, this album should attract zeuhl fans, especially those with some interest in some improvs in their music. This is radically different from the NY downtown avant-garde fusion tradition, this music will hardly attract listeners who believe that jazz=freedom. Heavy, almost metallic sound, dark cold atmosphere and extremely totalitarian concept places this music somewhere on the very borderline of jazz (speaking about atmosphere, not musical techniques).

Anyway, the choice is yours...
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