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Carpenter, Cody: Force Of Nature

Just over six months since I reviewed his Interdependence, synth-fusionist Cody Carpenter is back and this time he’s a Force Of Nature. A bold claim I’m sure you’ll agree, but you’ll nod even more vigorously once you settle in for the ride, because Carpenter slaps you - repeatedly - with the up tempoest of synth guitar fusion that you could hope to unearth. “Transcendence” couldn’t be any less Zen if you placed a stick of dynamite underneath it and yelled BOOM! Off, running and grinning from ear to ear the intricate drum work from Scott Seiver (Virgil Donati also appears) sparks wildly as Carpenter works and works and works his synth to near breaking point. Across the album the main man also handles some bass and some guitar, but one of the strengths of this collection is that he is more than happy to let his cohorts shine. Hence we get sumptuous cameos and support work from the likes of Jimmy Haslip on bass, as well as PJ D’atri and John Konesky on guitars. Together they make a mighty fine unit that is supremely comfortable operating at full, melodic, velocity.

“The Savage” proves that all concerned can also thrive while adding a more considered edge, the melody is still laid down thick but even the most virtuosic of instrumental moments remains a sing along. But with the approach tempered by a more soulful side, the fact that this album is so multifaceted is what truly sets Cody Carpenter out as master of the art. “Fantasy Of Form” melds jazz, latin and classical, while still feeling intrinsically linked to what you hear elsewhere, while “Untouched By Man” is a floating dreaming interlude that cleanses the palette. However, it’s the 80s like synth and powering drums of “Elemental Convergence”, sharp, incisive and catchy as hell “Adrift” and thirteen minute threat of “Obsession” that truly grabs the senses and simply refuses to let them go.

I was going to say that if synth led fusion was your bag, then this album should absolutely be on your radar. However, while that’s undoubtedly true, I don’t actually class myself as falling into that category and yet I too am thoroughly knocked out by the engaging, exciting tones laid down here. So, even if you don’t think synth led fusion is you bag, you should still check out Cody Carpenter and his quite magnificent music. After all, he is a Force Of Nature!

Track Listing
1. Transcendence
2. Eternal Lust
3. The Savage
4. Fantasy Of Form
5. Untouched By Man
6. Elemental Convergence
7. Playing In The Spirit World
8. Adrift
9. Obsession

Added: February 4th 2019
Reviewer: Steven Reid
Related Link: Force Of Nature @ Blue Canoe Records
Hits: 846
Language: english

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