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Spaced Out: Live at the Crescendo Festival

2007's been a great year so far for live album releases, with offerings from Frogg Cafe, Mahavishnu Project, Fromuz, Arti & Mestieri, Praxis, Jethro Tull, and others, already in the can. Add this latest from powerhouse Candian fusion outfit Spaced Out to that list, and you can probably nudge it towards the top while you are at it. Live at the Crescendo Festival was recorded in France back in 2006 during Spaced Out's tour of Europe in support of their Unstable Matter CD. After four studio albums, the timing is pretty ripe for a live album at this juncture, and Spaced Out offer up a nice mix of their material in this red hot instrumental set.

11 songs, each in the 5-6 minute range, means you get a lot of bang for your buck here on Live at the Crescendo Festival. If you are unfamiliar with Spaced Out, rest assured these guys can play their asses off, whether they are hitting you with majestic prog rock, hard hitting complex fusion, or aggressive progressive metal. The trio is comprised of bassist Antoine Fafard, drummer Martin Maheux, and guitarist Mark Tremblay. While they no longer employ a keyboard player, samples and Midi-patches are heard throughout their music, like on the mind-blower "The Lost Train", a furiously complex piece that sees Fafard's uncanny finger popping doing battle with Tremblay's searing guitar solos, while Maheux flails away and electronic samples bubble and blip. The synergy between these three players is astounding, and the way they flip-flop back and forth between jazz fusion, prog, and metal is simply a marvel to hear. The fact that they pull it off even more impressively in a live setting as opposed to the studio just makes this set all the more awe inspiring. Check out the insane interplay on "Unstable Matter", where jazz lines mix with metal riffs, or the scary, almost Planet X-ish "Seven the Seven" and "Toxix". Despite the abundance of chops-zilla here, the guys throw in plenty of melody on these songs, making each song highly memorable for their instrumental hook as well as the intense musicianship.

One These three are scary players, better yet, MONSTER players, and this live set is a must hear for lovers of contemporary fusion. Be prepared to have your jaw scraping the ground and the rest of your body melting from the heat.

Track Listing
1. Seven The Seven (8:20)
2. A Freak Az (5:05)
3. Toxix (5:48)
4. Infinite Ammo (5:06)
5. New Breed (6:06)
6. The Fifth Dimension (5:45)
7. The Lost Train (6:47)
8. Unstable Matter (6:55)
9. Antimatter (5:32)
10. Blood Fall (5:50)
11. Furax (6:18)

Added: August 20th 2007
Reviewer: Pete Pardo
Related Link: Band Website
Hits: 2483
Language: english

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