One would think that a trio including Scandinavia's hardest-working progressive rocker/free-jazz man Robin Taylor and Secret Oyster sax man Karsten Vogel would sound like little more than chaos and cacophony. But Certain Undiscoveries, the sixth CD from the Taylor's Universe project, is a well-paced and invigorating progressive-rock-slash-jazz record packed with compositions that are fuller than those on previous albums — which, truth be told, some critics have accused of sounding like studio quirks more than full-blown songs.
"Little Vic" is a fun jazzy number, thanks to Vogel's tasty flourishes, but he really shines on "Nilfish," "Remember the Bill" and "Majestaeten, Ministeren og Forsvarschefen" — blowing with wild abandon and resorting to downright Crimson-like squawking on "Ministry of Light." Taylor's tasteful guitar playing emerges on "Kelds Far" (an album highlight), and his multi-instrumental dexterity (Glockenspiel! Harmonium!) can be heard throughout these 11 tracks. The ambitiously titled closer, "A Beautiful Garden with a Lot of Depressed Animals Including Noise Sculpture," sounds like ambient birds until near the end, when all that cacophony I expected from the beginning of Certain Undiscoveries finally happens
If one were to file a single complaint about the disc, it would be that too many of the songs tend to meld into one another — although Taylor does shuffle some arrangements, and he throws in enough tempo changes to keep most adventurous listeners happy. That said, I'd like to hear how Taylor's Universe would sound with a quirky vocalist ...
2) Little Vic
4) Majesty 7
5) Majestaeten, Ministeren og Forsvarschefen
6) Remember the Bill
7) Ministry of Light
8) Coming Soon
9) Kelds Far
10) Variations On A Theme by D.S.
11) A Beautiful Garden with a Lot of Depressed Animals Including Noise Sculpture