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Mats/Morgan Band: Trends And Other Diseases (Reissue)

This pleasant reissue of the debut by Mats Oberg and Morgan Agren rearranges the track order a bit, drops the "Ooo Baby Baby" stuff and tacks on a fourteen (!) minute-long bonus track. The ditties here are cast with FZ's irons, instrumentals and vocal tracks split evenly and packing the same instrumental firepower.

Mats hits the synths hard and gets in time on the clavinet and harpsichord; Morgan's impeccable timing, polyrhythmic acrobatics and best Bozzio-Bruford impressions are in no short supply. Guitar and mandolin lines on a few cuts are supplied by Morgan's brother Jimmy, and one other ("Sockeplast") features Jocke Marsh on banjo. Mats and guest vocalist Dilba take the mic most often, and Mats can be heard taking himself least seriously on the clavinet-anchored "Guardian Witch," which is pretty catchy, a lot of fun. "Russin Lask" is a black sheep in the midst, with vocal contributions from no fewer than Dilba, Rusk Per ("mouth noises") and gospel man Derek Huntsman — plus some guitar crunch courtesy of Meshuggah's Fredrik Thordendal. Mats even gets his harmonica out for the quick-n-dirty "Agent Soda" and the chamber-esque exercise "Mamma." The uptempo attack of "Advokaten" by Mats and the Agrens romps with the energy of farm animals loosed from their pens.

The "Vault Soup Medley" is essentially a longform splice of dozens of EMAX — a once-popular sampling keyboard manufactured by E-mu — improvisations by Morgan, in many different styles with many different sounds and sequences. In the liner notes, Morgan recounts how crash-prone the EMAX was in performance, but since they only used their own samples no other keyboard could be substituted. Once, the EMAX crashed and Jimmy and second keyboardist Robert Elovsson opened the machine up with a screwdriver and repaired it in mere minutes while Mats and Morgan played without breaking from their improv! Quite a stellar debut, and yet, Trends still sounds like a warm-up for the greatness that was yet to come.

Tracklist:

1. I See You (4:46)
2. Trottsov (2:44)
3. Guardian Witch (5:30)
4. Stupid Bagatelle (2:19)
5. Russian Läsk (5:05)
6.–7. Read My Thoughts, Parts 1 & 2 (9:16)
8. Fire And Audio (4:54)
9. Please Tell Me (5:13)
10. Trash Romantic Land (4:08)
11. Sockeplast (3:22)
12. What´s That Guys Name ? (3:36)
13. Fialka´s House (1:17)
14. Advokaten (4:50)
15. The Krupa Question (1:08)
16. Agent Soda (3:13)
17. Mamma (2:16)
18. Vault Soup Medley, Vol. I (14:54) {Reissue Bonus Track}

Total time — 78:28

Added: December 1st 2008
Reviewer: Elias Granillo
Score:
Related Link: MORGAN AGREN Dot Com
Hits: 1417
Language: english

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