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(39:41; Bad Elephant Music)
After far too long, The Bob Lazar Story are back with their fourth album, and for those who have yet to come across them then they describe themselves as "purveyors of tritonal wankery, and offer an oasis of ProgMathsyFusion to soothe your weary earholes,” so there. If that isn’t enough, band leader/guitarist/multi-instrumentalist Matt Deacon is the only prog musician I have been able to have a beer with here in the Garden City (Christchurch NZ, not WGC UK), as he also departed from the UK many years ago to settle in Aotearoa. What I have always found quite intriguing about the band is that there are based around Matt and drummer Chris Jago, both originally Scousers, but Chris is based in Los Angeles which makes both composing and recording somewhat interesting as they work independently to create something which sounds as if they are bouncing ideas off each other. Also of interest to fans of the band is the reappearance of Mike Fudakowski on bass, who appeared on the second album ‘Space Roots’. I asked Matt what had happened with Mike and was told “Fud was heavily involved in an 8 year-long Dungeons and Dragons campaign and couldn't be disturbed. He escaped with his life, just, and I brought him back on board for a few tunes.” With album art which link to previous releases, a weird obsession with something called a “foodstool”, and a predilection for things very hot and spicy (hence the cover this time around), it is safe to say that this band are quite different to what else is around, and that’s before we get to the music. For Matt and Chris the world revolves around Frank Zappa, although in recent years there has also been an influence from Cardiacs. Complex and complicated music, which at times also includes quite a sense of humour, one would never realise the two main musicians are on either sides of the Pacific ocean as they weave their patterns. There are sixteen tracks with a total running time of less than forty minutes, and some of them are just off the wall skits not to be taken seriously at all, while others build and develop, all the time showing there is a future for instrumental progressive music from artist who refuse to conform to any given idea of what that should be like. Definitely for fans of Zappa, ‘Sing To God’ era Cardiacs, and progheads who don’t want their music to be too serious.
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