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  Crickets and Fireflies  
  Kinski, Paik, and Surface of Eceyon  
  The Music Fellowship  
Release Date:
Reviewed by:

This is the second "tryptych" from The Music Fellowship. I really liked the first one a lot, so when this came out i snatched up a copy, despite never having really heard anything by any of the bands before.

This is another lovely disc of mellowish music. If New Found Land was ambient, then Crickets and Fireflies is psychedelic. The two genres are closely related, but psychedelia has more energy, more frenetic motion, than ambient. Of course, i enjoy both genres.

Crickets and Fireflies starts off with the awesomely titled Keep Clear of Me, I Am Maneuvering With Difficulty by Kinski. This is a 20 minute opus of guitar histrionics. The song progresses through several movements, but overall it is dominated by guitarwork played through distortion. On the whole, it's enjoyable in a retro-70's kind of way. I feel as if the Kinski guitarist(s) attempted to channel the spirit of Hendrix here, and in all honesty they suceeded fairly well. However, well, i know that several Minions would be very annoyed by this song. This type of guitarwork and wandering rhythms really piss some folks off, so be forewarned.

The next two tracks are by Paik, who i thought were merely "okay" after i saw them open for Windy and Carl. However, well, maybe they just paled by comparision to Windy and Carl's live drones. On this release, they turn in two amazing songs. The guitarwork here is great, and the bassist and drummer provide tight rhythms to back up the heavily distorted guitar. The first of their two tracks, Spanish Holiday is a great contemporary psychedelic piece. Their second number, Eva is more ambient. It doesn't have the crazy rhythm of Spanish Holiday but does proceed along under an intense, washed out guitar drone. Very nice. In fact, i really like these 2 Paik tracks, and now i wished i had paid more attention to them in concert!

The two Paik songs total just around 20 minutes in length, which leaves almost 30 minutes for the final band to fill. And Surface of Eceyon certainly rise to the task with their epic Concert of Stars. Surface of Eceyon is a band whose orbit i have been circling for a while. Meaning that i want to listen to them, but have been unable to find their albums. You see, they are made up of Dick Baldwin (guitar), Daron Gardner (bass), and Aaron Snow (guitar) from Landing with Phil Jenkins (drums), and Yume Bitsuís Adam Forkner (guitar). Landing plus Yume Bitsu. Wow, talk about long drawn out guitar musings....

Well, i am pleased to report that Surface of Eceyon are all of that plus a cup of tea. This is one amazingly complex tune of guitar ambience, at the same time relaxing and energizing. Meditative i guess is the word i am looking for here.

Overall this track sounds a lot like Landing, which means that one guitar tinkles away a sparse melody, while the others wander through feedback-land, skipping along merrily in fields drenched with reverb. Specifically i guess this sounds more like Landing in their "guitar freakout" mode and than in their "mellow pop band" mode. If you like that sort of stuff, you will enjoy this. One word of warning -- when given 29 minutes to work with, the song builds really really slowly. So be patient.

Overall, this was a worthwhile purchase and i am very pleased with it. I suspect that fans of psychedelic guitar rock will likewise be impressed.

I wonder what The Music Fellowship have in store for us on their next tryptych?

Related Links:

New Found Land, the previous tryptych in this series.
Paik in concert.
A recent full-length by Landing, who are 60% of Surface of Eceyon. And here is an album from Yume Bitsu, who also contribute to Surface of Eceyon.


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