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Kevin Martinelli - 2013 - "Unpronounceable"

(57:47, ‘Kevin Martinelli’)


1.  Cautions in Transmission 4:12
2.  Heavy Above a Promise 4:11
3.  Salt in the Zeros 4:12
4.  Pacific 4:05
5.  Louisiana Hex Perimeter 4:14
6.  Airless Choice 3:50
7.  Twentieth Island 4:40
8.  Below the Grass 3:16
9.  Venture Fish 4:09
10. Sleeping Stone 4:14
11. Demonstrated Assembly 3:50
12. Anti-Theory 4:29
13. Lotus in a Fool Day 4:13
14. Side Case Skips 4:12 


Kevin Martinelli – keyboards, sampling, programming

Prolusion. US composer and musician Kevin MARTINELLI is originally a guitarist, from what I understand, but due to chance and circumstance he has decided to explore the art of making music from keyboards alone the last few years. "Unpronounceable" is Martinelli's second full-length production, self-released in 2013.

Analysis. For a person who cites bands such as Magma and King Crimson to be major sources of inspiration, the music explored on this production is rather far removed from what one might expect by someone namedropping them as highly influential on their homepage. If anything this is an album that comes across as much closer to the realm of the e-music, even if sampled guitars are among the recurring elements on this disc. We do get what appears to be a bow towards Robert Fripp though, on Twentieth Island, a piece that kind of comes across as sounds inspired by Fripp, explored within a possibly futuristic Caribbean context. Up to and including the use of presumably emulated steel piano. Otherwise the 14 instrumentals at hand all have a soundtrack quality to them to a lesser or greater degree. Which, I guess, is a generic description easy to toss out when dealing with an instrumental production of electronic music with a certain tendency to focus on moods and atmospheres. Some of the movies these soundtracks might fit would be rather innovative though. The blend of country music-inspired details with futuristic effects on Louisiana Hex Perimeter, for instance, a fitting soundtrack for a science fiction cowboy movie if anything. We're also treated to darker toned, dystopian creations, Heavy Above a Promise being a case in point, Anti-Theory another. We do get occasional nods to the likes of Kraftwerk and Tangerine Dream throughout, as well as Vangelis, although those may be more of an accidental thing than planned. And when listening to the theatrical, slow and distinctly Asian-inspired sounds on Lotus in a Fool Day, it's difficult not to associate that piece of music with Japanese artist Kitaro. On an album that is curiously satisfying for exploring this kind of music, the highlight for me personally is Demonstrated Assembly, intriguingly misnamed as Demonsrated Assembly on the promo CD I received. Personally I think the misnamed version fits the song better, as Martinelli manages to conjure an eerie, unnerving mood on this piece. Despite some possibly futuristic Caribbean oriented sound details in the second half of this tune.

Conclusion. Relatively short instrumental compositions with soundtrack qualities and an overall sound residing much more in the electronic than the progressive rock realm as such, Martinelli's music isn't one that seeks out any broad audience I guess. Those who tend to be fascinated by productions of this specific nature might want to seek out his music though, as he's a skilled creator of this kind of material and one able to assemble his material in a compelling manner too.

OMB=Olav M Bjornsen: March 15, 2015
The Rating Room

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Kevin Martinelli


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