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LABtrio: The Howls Are Not What They Seem

LABtrio is a Belgian jazz group consisting of Lander Gyselinck (drums), Anneleen Boehme (double bass), Bram De Looze (piano, Fender Rhodes) and also featuring guest musicians MichaŽl Attias (saxophone) and Christopher Hoffman (cello).

This group of young musicians have made quite an adventurous jazz album loosely based on the poetry of Allen Ginsberg, more specifically his avant-garde poem titled Howl. The music, like the poetry it is based upon mixes improvisation and the avant-garde especially in the minimalistic "M.A.S.T." where shrieking sax and off kilter drum patterns slowly evolve and in the unusual instrumentation in the completely off kilter "Ornette, The Western Screech" where sound effects abound. The album opening "Treppenwitz" trundles off the beaten path as well but also features a sax solo that carries a hint of melody.

One of my favourites is "Low Fat" with its skillful drum/bass groove having almost a bop-like feel. The intense "Mastodont" is another highlight featuring a cohesive synergy between sax and drums before everything stops allowing the bass to shine. The intensity begins again but is now softened with unusual piano motifs and mournful cello.

The Howls Are Not What They Seem is both adventurous and imaginative exhibiting skillful musicianship across the board. This is modern jazz presented in a unique and exciting way that should appeal to non-conformists everywhere.

Track Listing:
1. Treppenwitz (5:58)
2. Ornette, The Western Screech (2:45)
3. Low Fat (4:30)
4. Avondlijke Rust (4:09)
5. Considering Marriage (5:31)
6. Mastodont (4:34)
7. UmeŚ (2:44)
8. M.A.S.T. (5:49)
9. Moonmouth (7:05)
10. Kola Wars (3:57)
11. Wiggle (7:35)

Added: August 24th 2016
Reviewer: Jon Neudorf
Related Link: Band's Official Site
Hits: 1923
Language: english

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