At first, Exit Project's Livesplashes comes off like The Necks, especially that righteously quirky band's Sex masterpiece (which sounds like an instrumental Traffic gone Ibiza cool). Then a gaggle of World influences slowly and rhythmically creep in. That composition, Je Ne Suis Pas La, carefully ramps up, preserving its chill chamber aspects before letting down into a quiet Brazilian nightjungle, cruising crepuscular until Maria Logofet enters, his violin floating above the earthy bottomside, beginning the song's true central melody. He switches from an initial Hisako Yamash'ta voice over to Jean-Luc Ponty in a symphonic uptempo largo (sounds contradictory, but, trust me, these guys can do it) before the track transmutes once again.
By the time the 10+ minute composition winds down, there are chills crawling up your spine at any number of qualities: masterful understatement, the potpourri of cohered influences, smooth experimentalism, progressive jazz-rock passages, you name it, the song's rather unique while fully familiar. This extends to the entire disc. There are only four opuses at 40-minutes total, so there's plenty of room for stretched out thoughts and gestures within the ensemble's interplay. Hailing from Russia (the CD's caught from a gig in Moscow), there's a definite Russo flavor accompanied by Slavic and other regional tones, but the lads stop at little, and more than once I thought "Damn! Hermeto Pascoal would love this stuff! He thinks and plays this way too!", though in different context. Then the prog and rock elements hove into view, and I was off on another tangent.
Elsewhere, you'll discover some old Tangerine Dream sequenced Berlin pulse, koto (synth-patched), African percussives, and one passage that descends into a Mahleresque / Shostakovian miasma, Logofet's violin later pulling things back up to the surface of the earth before Oleg Smirnov's keyboard's take over, passing through several phases, morphing constantly. Anastasia Boguslavskaya's sax whips up a cross between Passport and Kraan as the band accentuates intensity…but never to a point that loses definition or grows bombastic, always centered in phantasmagoric vistas and subterranean intimations.
Let me, then, predict that more than a few musicians and industry folk are going to swallow their tongues over this disc 'cause it's pure class of an unusual order. I suggest you join them. I already have.
Edited by: David N. Pyles
Copyright 2012, Peterborough Folk Music Society.
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