FAME Review: Foreign Motion - In Flight
Foreign Motion - In Flight

In Flight

Foreign Motion

Available from the Foreign Motion online store.

A review written for the Folk & Acoustic Music Exchange
by Mark S. Tucker

If you 've been following the MoonJune Label's output of great fusion over the last few years (and, well, for its entire history), Foreign Motion—though it's not on that label—is the group for you. These twenty-somethings play their brains out in classic 70s fashion, but the center force is Cory Wong and his decidedly literate approach to solos, sets of narratives dripping with imagery, inflection, punctuation, street poetry, and decidedly individualistic nuance. Behind and beside him, Kevin Gostanguay (keyboards) takes a secondary front with muscle and death defying confidence. Yohannes Tona, bassist, is the mellowest cat of the ensemble, omnipresent, the guy who provides the glue between the instruments, and Petar Janjic is an extremely smooth drummer who fears no change-ups and in fact often throws a daunting amount of them into every song.

Until It Falls commences with a killer mutation of a classic Dave Brubeck quote and then repeats it in returning periodically to thematics while tearing all around the studio. The U.N. Assembly starts out funky 'n humorous, turns this way and that, and ratchets the heat up as things progress. Once again, Wong exhibits a truly unique set of idiomatics all through, from chikkin-pickin' to Frippian fanning. Tona takes a really cool-ass extended solo while Janjic remains uncharacteristically icy cool, letting everyone have their way, underwriting the contrast. But trust me; this Wong guy is going to quite soon be a very serious prime contender.

Each one of the gentz plays inside and outside of noted ensembles (Acoustic Alchemy, Bootsy Collins, The Blind Boys of Alabama, Radio City Rockettes, etc.), but the level of maturity on this disc is way beyond what would be normal to cats this young. Ellie starts out as something an early Yes might have composed and then lets down into a mellow section with scrambling bass, ending up in an exalted resumption of the melodics. If you want a barn-burner right off the bat, however, go immediately to Kings for a progressive shred fest dotted with pools of calm. Lord, lord,lord, I hope to God these musicians stay together 'cause there's a chemistry present that's riveting and unique.

Track List:

  • The Funk Underground (Yohannes Tona)
  • Until It Falls (Cory Wong)
  • The U.N. Assembly (Cory Wong)
  • Ellie (Cory Wong)
  • Kaleidoscope (Kevin Gastonguay)
  • Drift (Intro) (Cory Wong)
  • Drift (Cory Wong)
  • Kings (Wong / Janjic)
  • Pass the Plate (Cory Wong)
  • Rise Above (Yohannes Tona)
  • One (Kevin Gastonguay)
  • Flee (Kevin Gastonguay)
  • In Flight (Cory Wong)

Edited by: David N. Pyles

Copyright 2013, Peterborough Folk Music Society.
This review may be reprinted with prior permission and attribution.
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