Perhaps no band existing today mixes the virtuoso, medieval sounds of classic Gentle Giant, with the avant-garde stylings of what we call RIO (Rock In Opposition) quite like Poland's Gargantua. Their latest release Kotegarda is a stunning display of musical and compositional talent. Mostly instrumental save for some occasional vocalisations, Kotegarda meshes classical, rock, prog, jazz, and avant-garde elements in a very daring yet successfull way. With its sneaky violin melodies, wild organ passages, and use of counterpoint, a song like "Interrferrometerr", or even "Wżdy Czelestnik" for that matter, sounds like a head-on-collision between Gentle Giant's Acquiring the Taste and Soft Machine's Third albums. Featuring drums, violin, various keyboards, bass, and guitar, Gargantua utilize every possible facet of their instruments to conjure up a plethora of available sounds here. At times, the results are majestic and just the slightest bit quirky & whimsical ("Meszuga Klejpulesa"), while on other occasions the band can easily get all ominous & savage ("Paralaksy Dyzaskorufin" and " Gargoyles"), recalling such acts as King Crimson, Nebelnest, Univers Zero, and Magma.
Tylda Ciolkosz is the real key here, a violinist with purpose and not afraid to take chances, trading some blistering passages with guitarist Bartek Zeman throughout this release, as well as taking the lead melody lines on many tracks. Ciolkosz, who is one of the newer additions to the group, seems to have helped take Gargantua to the next level, and this, their second release (4 years in the making) is without a doubt, the real deal.
1. Wżdy Czelestnik (5:34)
2. Kotegarda III (0:27)
3. Interrferrometerr (6:04)
4. Meszuga Klejpulesa (4:48)
5. The Augurs of Spring (Dances of the Young Girls)* (3:58)
6. Paralaksy Dyzaskorufin (6:06)
7. Tripl Ratamaklie (5:28)
8. Kotegarda II (1:05)
9. Gargoyles (8:16)
10. Kotegarda I (1:50)