New Mexico is known for its picturesque landscape, arts & crafts and Mother Earth type activities, but not cited for harvesting diverse progressive rock power trios. In addition, the band's marketing pitch asks, "What happens when two Buddhists and a Muslim meet to make music?" Evidently, a whole lot is going on, as the musicians' incorporate an electro-organic feast, enveloping a 3D outlook, spanning Middle Eastern oud-based rock, Indofunk, jazz fusion and hearty doses of improvisation. Here, exceptionally versatile guitarist Mustafa Stefan Dill integrates thrusting King Crimson chord voicings, understated melodies, shades of Americana, Mid-Eastern modalities and performs on the oud as well.
"Circus" is a piece that communicates yet another side of this enterprising unit's makeup. They inaugurate the proceedings with a splintered drums and guitar call / response motif. But matters swiftly transform into a C&W like two-step breakout, coupled with the sounds of Morocco via Dill's clever phraseology and shrewd improvisational faculties along with an affable melodic hook. The guitarist's slick-picking lines come to a halt as they migrate into a 2/4 rock pulse and moderate the main theme. Consequently, the group's divergent processes don't end there, as Dill incorporates jazzy Wes Montgomery-like chord patterns into the schematic along with a touch of pandemonium towards the closing moments. In sum, if you're looking for a solidly produced jazz rock or progressive rock outing that deviates from the tried and true, then Pray For Brain fits the bill in a rather huge way.
Christine Nelson: bass; Jefferson Voorhees: drums, percussion; Mustafa Stefan Dill: guitars, oud.
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