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French progressive rock band NeBeLNeST return with their third album ZePTO, and second for the Cuneiform Records label. Listening to a NeBeLNeST record is like taking a long, dark, and chaotic ride through barren landscapes, dense forests, and star filled skies. In short, yes, this band's instrumental madness invokes plenty of feelings and moods, which is what makes ZePTO all the more intriguing. Images of King Crimson, Shylock, Univers Zero, Pink Floyd, and Present all come to mind when listening to the music of NeBeLNeST, yet the music has a very modern feel to it.

The songs on ZePTO are basically the work of two different line-ups, as over the few years it has taken to put the album together the band went through two guitar players, Sebastien Carmona and Cyril Malderez (both are now gone and the new guitarist is Matthieu Sassier, who is not featured on the album). The core members of Michael Anselmi (drums), Gregory Tejedor (bass), and Olivier Tejedor (keyboards) are also joined by Vincent Boukefa on clarinet on this recording. Fans of the RIO (Rock in Opposition) movement will love "De Thriumpho Naturae", featuring ominous Mellotron sounds, textured percussion, squealing clarinet, and ripping guitar work. Spacey symphonic prog is all the rage on "Pillars of Birth", which has tasty guitar solos from Carmona and no shortage of juicy synth layerings. Olivier's keyboard work is astounding throughout, as he drops in plenty of varied sounds (Mellotron, organ, synths) in both a lead and rhythm position. Anselmi adds in the right amount of fusion feel with his busy drum work-check out his flashy chops on "Do What Thou Wilt", a haunting Crimson styled burner that also sees Gregory's bass way up on the mix slashing leads alongside Malderez' jagged, distorted guitar licks.

Dark, daring, and dense is a good way to describe ZePTO, a merciless collection of savage instrumental music that manages to uncover hidden nuances after each listen. NeBeLNeST have slowly built a reputation as a band to be reckoned with over their short career, and with this new release they are sure to rise to the top of the avant-prog heap.

Track Listing
1. Pillars of Birth
2. Majnuns
3. Old Ones
4. Thing in the Walls
5. Fabric of Reality
6. De Thriumpho Naturae
7. Do What Thou Wilt
8. Station 9

Added: October 16th 2006
Reviewer: Pete Pardo
Related Link: NeBeLNeST Website
Hits: 3594
Language: english

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