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Cabinets of Curiosity: The Chaos Game

Cabinets of Curiosity is a group of young musicians hailing from New Jersey. They released their debut EP EPonymous in 2016 and have followed it up with their first full length album titled The Chaos Game. This is one of those bands that follows the throw everything in but the kitchen sink approach but that isn’t necessarily a bad thing. In fact, I would say it works more often than it doesn’t, especially when you have the musicianship to back it up as this band most clearly has. Bands like Bent Knee, Diablo Swing Orchestra and maybe Frank Zappa might be apt reference points.

Following the prog tradition this is also a concept album. The protagonist is Julie, a legal assistant who has been summoned by Dr. Goerhe (God of Chaos and Order) to assist him in destroying and recreating the universe. Something doesn’t quite work out and the universe she helped create needs to be saved. And get this, by blowing up a mountain. Sounds kind of crazy doesn’t it? Well, the music fits in quite well as the band’s avant approach, as well as snippets of jazz, rock, classical and pop will keep any listener on the edge of his or her seat.

The first track “Death, She Walks On” is an interesting acapella with a complex vocal arrangement that sounds great. With “Angular Sterility”, the title says it all as this is a truly progressive offering with numerous tempo changes, varying soundscapes, intricate guitar picking, varied vocals including opera and some excellent sax and flute work. On “Fractals And Coastlines”, the album’s longest track, disjointed rhythms (that flow surprisingly well) and numerous change ups make this another excellent progressive track. The sound can be quite grandiose and cathedral (if that makes sense) and the guitar is again complex and quite scintillating. There are some pretty moments as well, particularly the acoustic guitar, sax and flute. The guitar in the heavy-ish “Timeless Sound” has some nice bite and the keyboards are well utilized while “The Doomsday Algorithm” starts quite pensive with lovely keys, flute and vocals but with a subtle darker vibe that creeps in. The sax is fairly dominant in this piece and the band breaks into an instrumental break of pure chaos. The rest of the tracks will keep your head spinning as well.

Those into the eclectic side of progressive rock should get plenty of mileage out of The Chaos Game. I have to say it is an excellent full length debut. Recommended.

Track Listing:
1. Death, She Walks On
2. Angular Sterility
3. Fractals And Coastlines
4. Timeless Sound
5. The Doomsday Algorithm
6. The Same Tiny Apartment…
7. In A Day
8. Fractometer
9. Bro Science
10. The Chemist And The Engineer
11. Nowhere Near The Blade
12. The Clockwork Pheasant

Added: June 6th 2019
Reviewer: Jon Neudorf
Score:
Related Link: Band's Official Site
Hits: 167
Language: english

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