Tuesday, September 25, 2018

Electric Mud "The Deconstruction of Light"

Welcome to The Closet Concert Arena fellow progheads!  As always it is a pleasure and honor I don't take for granted to be able to bring you the best in new and lesser-known prog music.  After a raucous week in LA, the mood settles just a bit as the search for all things prog makes a return trip to Germany and a follow-up visit with Electric Mud and their latest release, "The Deconstruction of Light."

It was but three years ago The Closet Concert Arena first discovered Electric Mud, and summing up their sound as "post-progressive rock" doesn't quite touch all the bases.  While the sky overhead may be filled with dark ominous clouds and the atmosphere hangs heavy, Electric Mud walks many a mile through the prog garden, delving into sections labeled ambient, metal, and avant-garde just to name a few.  This is a band that crawls inside your head just to see if they fit, so perhaps we best get to it...

The opener this week is a bit dark and dreary; "Suburban Wasteland Blues."  The opening guitars are tangibly heavy--and that is a good thing.  Electric Mud does a bit of a bait-and-switch here as this song just bleeds the blues...but prog elements leap off the disc at the same time.  Think Adrian Belew jamming with John Lee Hooker and you're close.  If your feet ain't tapping as this song climbs over, through, and around time and tempo changes, check your shoes to see if they're empty...

Next up on this calorie laden buffet is "Heads in Beds."  A sultry guitar leads you down a dimly lit corridor as the song opens.  Waltzing through domes of light cast by overhead streetlamps you alternately  disappear in darkness and reappear as if walking a lone desolate avenue on a rainy night.  The top notes are reminiscent of The Strawbs and  Tangerine Dream while the guitar work has just a hint of a Mark Knopfler influence; elegant and brooding while at the same time extremely minimal...in a word, fantastic.  The music continues to walk the prog garden in search of fellow nyctophiles; Electric Mud is haunting in this piece without crossing into the macabre or evil--just floating on this side of the darkness...


Liner Notes...hailing from Springe in the district of Hannover, Germany, Electric Mud was founded by bass player and sound conceptualist Hagen Bretschneider.  The band, now an official trio,  also includes Lennart Huper on rhythm guitar and Nico Walser on guitars, keyboards, percussion, noises...and sound alchemy.  Manfred Lohse is credited for video production...these credits alone should be a sliver of light shining on the depths to which Electric Mud will dig to capture the essence of their sound.

"The Deconstruction of Light" was released in April, the band's third full length album.  Paying homage to the prog standard bearers that tilled the garden early on, Electric Mud doesn't just echo the sounds of the past, rather they sift the many layers and add a touch of their own DNA, creating a unique sound amongst the familiar.

To learn more about Electric Mud and make a purchase check their website Electric Mud.  Links there will take you to bandcamp, soundcloud, Amazon, and other music sites for listening and buying--with an emphasis on the latter.  There is also Facebook and Twitter @Electricmudd  to keep up with all the latest band information.

Final selection for review this week is "Through the Gates."  Electric Mud is extremely good at giving the listener a macro view of the inner workings of a determined mind, allowing you to glimpse a private world not usually on display.  The percussion in this piece is deafeningly restrained; you feel the blows in your conscious but no physical harm is done.  Music to contemplate by...


I chose a reprise of sorts for your listening pleasure this week; "Black Dog." The opening riff lifts the top of your skull and rains down all over your mind...aromatics of Deep Purple burst through the thick outer shell encasing the song as the tempo and mood swing back away from the sun.  Electric Mud manage to say quite a bit without once uttering a lyric, filling the canvas to overload.  As you sit back and allow the music to swallow you whole, you realize the ride down is as fulfilling as it is mesmerizing...dim the lights...

                   

Yet one more trek through the prog garden has yielded a hearty bounty for the week.  Electric Mud takes you on a joy ride through a cavernous section of the prog garden; dark and eery at times but never letting go of your hand.  The post-progressive section of the prog garden has a reputation for being ominous and gloomy, but don't be fooled; Electric Mud has the power to light up a seemingly impenetrable darkness--and you'll want to be there when the beacon burns through the haze...

So the search for all things prog moves forcibly ahead as the Closet Concert Arena moves on.  Electric Mud has shown another side of the prog garden, allowing a dark hue to wash over the sun soaked dunes...and the result is magic.  The journey continues...until next time...   

1 comment:

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