21.7.13

The Aristocrats - Culture Crash (2013)

The Aristocrats is a musical trio formed by drummer Marco Minnemann together with Bryan Beller and Guthrie Govan. Yes, this sounds promising by just looking the names. Among them, Bryan Beller maybe the only one need a little introduction, just in case. Brian most popular duties was playing bass for Steve Vai for more than decades, then he also the thumbing guy behind James LaBrie solo works. The Aristocrats was originally only a stage group aimed for one jamming session. Their show was a success,so short story was, they moved to the studio to record original songs. Culture Clash is their second album by now. With such hyper creative musician on board, this album indeed comes with the sharpest edge of music, ranging from progressive rock to bizarre funk fusion.

Dance Of The Aristocrats as the starter song begin with provocative drum pattern. Using the jamming structure, the bass comes next then follow up by the guitar. Rather hard to define the base style for this, as in other rest of the song, it should be called progressive rock with a taste of electro-funk bass line. Culture Clash begin with a duet between Bryan and Guthrie to formed the thematic riffs. All songs on the album comes without much overdub in guitar, mean we purely listen to three elements, drums, bass and guitars at once. Louisville Stomp is mimicking jazz spirit from the southern area / New Orleans, perhaps. Ohhhh Noooo must be the work initially by Brian Beller for its leading bass theme. Three of them divided same amount of duties to composed each one three songs, thus end up with nine tracks on this album. Gaping Head Wound yet again another jazz-like opening riffs. You must aware that during about each five or six minutes, the song can turned into completely different styles during the song. For instance Gaping Head Wound also comes with a ska rhythm sections. Desert Tornado is another track with Marco opening drum solo, quite similar structure as in Dance Of The Aristocrats. If you familiar with Guthrie's solos album called Erotic Cakes, the next song Cocktail Umbrellas will be close to the materials on Erotic Cakes. This song maybe the most 'melodious' one by its distinguished leading guitars. Another fast tempo progressive feel in Living the Dream, then we are finish by And Finally. I found the last track to be as enjoyable as the rest of song, so no slow down, in fact, the groove in And Finally sounds the sweetest of all.

At first the album is too provocative creative to grasp in. But believe me, just in couple or thrice round of spin, all the drum beat and bizarre bass line will begin sounds familiar by now. The only problem of having three equal member on the composition, is the lack of leading melodies. Their approach of 'all equal share' in composition mean we need to readily switch our attention from one instrument to another, usually by just a split of seconds. Which mean they may sounds too 'jamming' in nature. But even though this is a jamming materials, the quality surely above all you can imagine. Guthrie Govan has been crafting his fame by doing lots of guitar demonstration on Youtube, and also as guest guitarist on many projects. By joining The Aristocrats we can see his potential finally forge into different level as he can concentrated as member of the band. Just a trivia, guitarist Greg Howe was the original chosen guitarist by Marco and Bryan, alas he was unavailable at the moment. The Aristocrats put in the extreme of trio drum-bass-guitar composition, mainly on progressive rock styles. Not much metal feel, but more leaning to jazz and funk diversities. Love guitar? This is your killer stuff to grab.

Metal Harem class: ********* nine stars out of ten

The Aristocrats - Culture Clash 2013
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1. Dance Of The Aristocrats
2. Culture Clash
3. Louisville Stomp
4. Ohhhh Noooo
5. Gaping Head Wound
6. Desert Tornado
7. Cocktail Umbrellas
8. Living The Dream
9. And Finally

Line-up:
Guthrie Govan (guitar)
Bryan Beller (bass)
Marco Minnemann (drums)


The Aristocrats Culture Crash Album Review

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