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andromeda mega express orchestra - vula (2x12inch vinyl lp)




$25.80

ARTIST // andromeda mega express orchestra
LABEL // alien transistor (de)
CAT // n050lp


  



Double LP version. Gatefold sleeve. Includes download code. Berlin's Andromeda Mega Express Orchestra returns with its fourth album Vula. Having celebrated their ten-year anniversary with a stunning series of concerts in 2016, the 18-piece's new full-length showcases a stronger focus on harmony and melody -- and yet AMEO sound no less explosive or unpredictable than before. It arrives gently, with shimmering lights, soft winds, sashaying melodies, and of course, the isotherms and isotheres function just as they should: All of a sudden, lighting strikes amid the concord of instruments, unforeseen energies erupt and upset the rhythmic scenery. Making a combined effort to create sheltering patches of harmony within the unfolding drama, leader Daniel Glatzel and his 18-piece "working band" set out to harness album number four: Vula. Another musical tour de force that connects too many dots, decades, traditions and genres to mention, Vula is quite a different beast compared to its live predecessor or the orchestra's last studio effort Bum Bum (N 029CD/LP, 2012): There's bigger, bolder strokes, and the compositions are linked by recurring motifs and harmonies, which is why the new album sounds like one entity: It is one hour-long adventure that needs to be listened to in full. The title Vula, taken from the Tumbuka language (spoken in the northern region of Malawi), indeed translates to tempest or thunderstorm. Ranging from softly trickling melodies courtesy of older masters ("Lakta Mata Ha") and hazy interludes, the mood, vibe, and pace change faster than cloud formations come flying across the screens nowadays (e.g. "Qwetoipntv Vjadfklvjieop" with its arrangement a` la H. Lachenmann). Head-nod bliss, motion picture soundtrack vibes, and even J.B. licks aren't mutually exclusive in these compositions, as AMEO showcase with "J Schleia", a track that nods both to Dilla/Grandmaster Flash and to Bach-era counterpoint techniques. Elsewhere, a pounding surf-rock beat metamorphoses over the course of 14 minutes ("In The Light Of Turmoil"), only to see them return to patches that are surprisingly catchy and calm. The final applause turns out just as thunderous though, after the album ends with the vibrant and throbbing "Papaya Flyers IX Epsylon", a live recording that already foreshadows the group's later collaboration with Hermeto Pascoal. The entire process, from writing to intricate post-production, took almost five years.