French mix-master Venux Deluxe (Magma, Gong), duly captures his fellow countrymen's exuberant sound amid his penchant for detail on the trio's third album which is a powerful composite of jazz power trio fare and other stylistic factors. Thumping backbeats, thorny time signatures, pumped-up grooves and a few quieter moments make for a comprehensive program.
The band excels during the rapid fire episodes led by alto saxophonist Elie Dalibert, coupled with the rhythm section's crisp and often ferocious interplay; shadowed by guitarist Manu Adnot's heavily distorted bass lines and electronics treatments. Otherwise, it seems that Adnot employs multi-tracking in spots, to overlay 6-string guitar parts and contrasting bass tonalities.
The trio executes a mid-tempo, jazz-rock anthem motif on "Electric Love," looming as one of the more mainstream pieces on the album; although flowing electronics envelop the bridge section leading to the finale. Dalibert's breathy lines contain vocal attributes within a low-key melody line. However, the musicians methodically pick up steam as the saxophonist elevates the proceedings to the upper-registers. And they meld the primary theme into a forceful yet resonant incursion. Here, Adnot imparts a sense of duality via trebly chord voicings atop the sturdy bass line. This aspect tenders an additional layer of contrast to the thrusting pulse and harmonically attractive plot. Indeed, fans of Happy Apple, progressive-rock, expressionistic jazz-rock and left-of-center jazz should experience a touch of nirvana with this first-class effort.
Elie Dalibert: alto saxophone; Manu Adnot: guitars; Arthur Narcy: drums.
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