All About Jazz

Home » Articles » CD/LP/Track Review

17

Djam Karet: Regenerator 3017

Glenn Astarita By

Sign in to view read count
The Southern California progressive rock band commemorates 30-years as a high-flying and highly esteemed unit with its 17th full-length album that to some extent rewinds back to the infancy of the genre. And while the group frequently enjoys critical success and a loyal fan base, the musicians openly recognize that commercial success is not the main driver, as they predominately focuses on the artistic side of matters. They don't tour a whole lot, yet their steadfast ability to zoom in on qualitative aspects, often elevate the totality of their output to higher ground via a manifesto, saliently nurtured with a sense of purpose. At times, Regenerator 3017 is operated with a dash of antiquity, partly due to multi-instrumentalist Gayle Ellett's use of the Mellotron keyboard, hearkening back to the early days of King Crimson, The Moody Blues and numerous cutting-edge Euro-prog bands of the 70s.

The big bass and pulsating cadences remain intact, but unlike older Djam Karet outings, this album is not designed with a search and destroy mantra, ablaze with streaming guitars and thrusting crescendos. However, even in these instances, the band always brings a keenly melodic gait to the table and not primarily concerned with endless riffing and tricky time signatures just for the sake of it.

Guitarists Mike Henderson and Mike Murray intermittently juice the proceedings up atop slow grooves and climactic buildups, although "Wind Pillow" morphs into a stately rock-anthem of sorts amid Ellett's silvery synth lines that etch the primary hook. Moreover, echoes of "Dark Side of the Moon" era Pink Floyd come to mind. As the following piece "Lost Dreams" is steeped in a hard-rocking blues vamp and smoothed with ambient sub-motifs.

The final track "On the Edge of the Moon," kicks off with sublime acoustic pianos and accenting electronics effects that swirl into a symphonic rock opus, leading to a circular ostinato breakout. At eight and one-half minutes it's the lengthiest work. Here, Ellett's corpulent Moog notes contrast the steamy guitar parts, bleached with a soulful edge that segues into grandiose choruses towards the finale. Ultimately, they redevelop a classic framework into a bracing philosophy, largely spiked with an effervescent modern era discourse.

Track Listing: Prince of the Inland Empire; Living in the Future Past; Desert Varnish; Wind Pillow; Lost Dreams; Empty House; On the Edge of the Moon.

Personnel: Gayle Ellett: electric guitar, Rhodes, moog, mellotron, solina, Greek bouzouki, field recordings; Mike Henderson: electric guitar, percussion; Mike Murray: electric guitar; Henry Osborne: bass, piano, keyboards, Chuck Owen Jr.: drums, percussion, keyboards & effects; Mark Cook: Warr guitar (2).

Title: Regenerator 3017 | Year Released: 2014 | Record Label: Self Produced

Tags

comments powered by Disqus

CD/LP/Track Review
Read more articles
Regenerator 3017

Regenerator 3017

Self Produced
2014

buy
The Heavy Soul Sessions

The Heavy Soul...

Self Produced
2011

buy
 

New Dark Age

Cuneiform Records
2001

buy
 

Ascension - New Dark...

Independent Records
2001

buy

Related Articles

Read Love & Peace CD/LP/Track Review
Love & Peace
by Karl Ackermann
Published: February 20, 2018
Read La Saboteuse CD/LP/Track Review
La Saboteuse
by Chris May
Published: February 20, 2018
Read Memories of Maynard CD/LP/Track Review
Memories of Maynard
by Nicholas F. Mondello
Published: February 20, 2018
Read Cosmic Playground CD/LP/Track Review
Cosmic Playground
by Don Phipps
Published: February 20, 2018
Read For Gyumri CD/LP/Track Review
For Gyumri
by Nenad Georgievski
Published: February 19, 2018
Read Sextet (Parker) 1993 CD/LP/Track Review
Sextet (Parker) 1993
by Mark Corroto
Published: February 19, 2018
Read "Asian Fields Variations" CD/LP/Track Review Asian Fields Variations
by John Kelman
Published: May 21, 2017
Read "Rock Pool Mirror" CD/LP/Track Review Rock Pool Mirror
by Barry O'Sullivan
Published: July 19, 2017
Read "IZA" CD/LP/Track Review IZA
by Ian Patterson
Published: April 17, 2017
Read "Sailors' Tales 1970-1972" CD/LP/Track Review Sailors' Tales 1970-1972
by John Kelman
Published: November 11, 2017
Read "Satori" CD/LP/Track Review Satori
by Roger Farbey
Published: March 7, 2017
Read "90 Going On Amazing" CD/LP/Track Review 90 Going On Amazing
by Dan Bilawsky
Published: August 21, 2017