Banksville Records - 201002Available from Audio Globe.
A review written for the Folk & Acoustic Music Exchange
I normally don't apply the term 'madcap' to things because so much of what is now granted the title bears such a beggarly resemblance to the sort of insanity the old Loony Tunes / Merrie Melodies crew—Tex Avery & Co.—were artsmithing, but SADO has definitely tapped into that frenzied surrealistic subconscious in Weather Underground, ostensibly "a story of love and war loosely based on an actual event". The subject, of course, is the infamous U.S. Weather Underground radical sect, but the disc is by no means based on "an event" but rather the entire liberation effort through the lens of jazz, alt, avant-garde, episodism, and fractal compositions.
This 2-CD set (one disc in Italian, one in English & Italian) is loaded with hidden and not-so-hidden musical references—often brief, so ya hafta pay attention (catch the Pink Floyd in Food a la Blue)—but really states itself more in the way a Waring blender chaos of rapidly morphing themes and riffs rarely staying focused on anything but their own anarchisms. Humor abounds, as do skillful serial demonstrations of finesse and looped consciousness. Hal Wilner might conceivably have put this together, had he been tripping on LSD bequeathed by Philip K. Dick, and fans of the construction methods of Zappa and Keneally will be more than happy to find similar deliriulistic delights.
It's well past time that some kind of tribute was concocted for that old SDS-ish phenomenon of days gone by, but I'm not sure any political purpose is herein served, only the artistic by way of a quasi-plunderphonicized amalgam of historical gasps and yelps. That may seem a tad negative. It's not. You'll understand when you hear, so expect bop and some of the African rhythms of the 70s as well (Manu Dibango, Osibisa, Mandrill, etc.), integrated as decorative instruments in a wildly transmutating tapestry. However, if you're a fan of the great old Italian prog-fusion days (Formula 3, Picchio dal Pozzo, PFM, Le Orme, Il Volo, Banco del Mutuo Succorso, and so many tragically overlooked ensembles), you'll find much of note here…yea, even to the extent of the Greek (the great Aphrodite's Child).
Edited by: David N. Pyles
Copyright 2010, Peterborough Folk Music Society.
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