Moraine | Metamorphic Rock: Live at NEARfest

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Rock: Avant-Prog Jazz: Jazz-Rock Moods: Instrumental
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Metamorphic Rock: Live at NEARfest

by Moraine

Moraine is an omnivorous Seattle-based instrumental quintet that achieves a unique sound while drawing on forms ranging from art rock to Chinese folk music to plugged-in power jazz and more.
Genre: Rock: Avant-Prog
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  Song Share Time Download
1. Irreducible Complexity / Manifest Density (Live)
7:25 $0.99
2. Save the Yuppie Breeding Grounds (Live)
4:03 $0.99
3. Disillusioned Avatar / Dub Interlude / Ephebus Amoebus (Live)
10:26 $0.99
4. Disoriental Suite (Live)
11:46 $0.99
5. Kuru (Live)
4:31 $0.99
6. The Okanogan Lobe (Live)
7:36 $0.99
7. Uncle Tang's Cabinet of Dr. Caligari (Live)
3:45 $0.99
8. Blues for a Bruised Planet (Live)
4:36 $0.99
9. Waylaid (Live)
5:31 $0.99
10. Middlebräu (Live)
9:10 $0.99
Downloads are available as MP3-320 files.


Album Notes
Since releasing their widely acclaimed debut CD manifest deNsity (MoonJune Records MJR028) in 2009, Seattle quintet Moraine have quickly built a reputation as one of the most electrifying and original instrumental rock bands anywhere, winning over listeners across the globe with their unique amalgam of art rock, forward-thinking jazz, world music, and a host of other musical ingredients. The band up the ante with their highly anticipated new release Metamorphic Rock: Live at NEARfest, a blazing concert performance engineered for maximum sonic impact by legendary Pacific Northwest producer Steve Fisk.

Metamorphic Rock captures Moraine in peak form at NEARfest 2010, the world’s preeminent showcase for progressive rock, where they wowed listeners with their inventive compositions, formidable musicianship, and tightly meshed instrumental interplay. The first Moraine release to feature woodwind virtuoso James DeJoie and powerhouse drummer Stephen Cavit, Metamorphic Rock marks a major advance in the group’s evolution from their chamber-rock origins toward a more forceful and dynamic sound. The album consists largely of new and previously unreleased material, including striking arrangements of ancient and contemporary Asian music, augmented by a number of radically retooled tunes from manifest deNsity.

Moraine have been compared to King Crimson, the Mahavishnu Orchestra, and Terje Rypdal, but though these comparisons are sometimes apt (and humbly appreciated by the band), the group has forged its own distinct sonic identity, whether engaging in jazz-inflected improvisation, executing intricate ensemble passages, or dishing out crushing, twisted riffs, while displaying a warmth and lyricism often lacking in avant-rock. As Metamorphic Rock amply demonstrates, Moraine, like their geological namesake, are truly a force of nature.



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Great playing and superb writing
This powerful live album by Moraine showcases the band’s fearless ability to create bold melodic themes and deliver virtuoso playing on all fronts.

Sonic thrills are everywhere, from the growly bite of James DeJoie’s baritone sax (he also plays flute and percussion) to the piercing, sometimes giddy shrieks and cries of Alicia DeJoie’s searing violin. Dennis Rea has mastered a full range of guitar sounds, from pure unadulterated distortion to delicate and semi-transparent clarity, and his compositional skills and gift for creating interesting musical structures are fully evident. Masterfully powerful bass and drums by Kevin Millard and Stephen Cavit, respectively, propel these compositions as if the band was a musical raft riding a rapids of sound to deliver its vision.

There is much here for the ear as well as the brain, including rhythms that are more intricate than one typically encounters in music with this much torque. The majestic Oriental-tinged melodic lines of Disoriental Suite are incredibly vivid, and clearly borne out of Rea’s experiences while living in China. His ability as an aural landscape painter is further demonstrated in The Okanogan Lobe. And there is musical humor as well, as exhibited in the title and the opening theme of Uncle Tang’s Cabinet of Dr. Caligari.

Many of the effects used by these musicians sound familiar, but rarely does one hear them wielded so deftly and tastefully. This album is a magnificent statement of avant-garde rock, one that shouldn’t be missed.