Posted on | September 19, 2010 |
Gilad Atzmon &
The Orient House Ensemble
The tide has changed – ALBUM REVIEW
The album starts up cheekily enough with
and the warm inviting voice of David Essex. The track is somewhat reminiscent of parts of the Bonzo Dog Band’s Gorilla Album; The atmosphere evoked is that of a Party or Carnival that is about to start, and so it is….
The tide has changed
is the second track and it kicks into a higher gear and accelerates at breakneck pace, twisting in sexy snakey melodic lines. Furiously fast scales and blasting climaxes peaking into angelic vocal plateaus. Sudden, breathtaking slides down into semi-silence and then the track morphs again & again. Almost psychedelic at times and therefore very hard to classify. Curiously funky.
And so have we
A beautiful subtle tune, lovely playing from everyone and very cool vocals from Tali Atzmon. Gilad & Co use vocals in an original way, refraining from getting into lyrics but using the voice more as an instrument. I like a good song myself. But often the lyrics can taint a good tune. Listening to the Orient Ensemble is a pleasure, it is the kind of music which frees the mind, a lyric would limit it and confine it to the song verse structure and the message of the lyric. Thankfully “The tide has changed” is free of such constraints.
Bolero at Sunrise
This track is gorgeous and enchanting! It gets better the more you listen to it, in fact it is one of those addictive tracks. Music to have sex by, or drink fine wine to. Excellent drumming. Would be wonderful to see a belly dance to this, Perfect tempo chilled and cool. Gradual harmonic deconstruction into BeBop and back again. I like to get lost in music, I know it is good when I can’t remember who is playing or what the track is. I know my boundaries have been pushed and no longer know where I am….. excellent.. So it is with Gilad Atzmon &The Orient House Ensemble, they are unpredictable, surprising, serious one moment funny the next. There is some excellent piano work from Frank Harrison on this album. They all work so well as a team, it’s not just about Gilad.
London to Gaza
One of the best tunes…Wonderful Climaxes, climbing intervals and sweeping slides upwards from Gilad, that lead into screeching distortion and chaos. Exquisite chaotic jazz, Hard Bop at its best. They build it up and then knock it down again and again forever morphing the music before them.
The Album finishes as it began, with a party atmosphere created by the baggy whimsical singing and an absence of a lyric – the kind of singing you do when you are drunk and can’t remember the lines. “The tide has changed” is a polymorphic Jazz extravaganza, with many twists and turns and universal in its appeal. The test of good music is this; does it sound good now & will it sound good in the future?. …. The answer is YES!
Atzmon founded the Orient House Ensemble band in London in the 2000 together with Asaf Sirkis (dr), Frank Harrison(pi) and Oli Hayhurst (bs).
19 September 2010
reviewed by Jonathon Blakeley.