A truly bizarre release by this Belarusian collective that whilst inspired by classical composers such as Shostakovich and Stravinsky also owes a debt to the likes of King Crimson and Univers Zero. The traditional rock band format is enhanced not only by violin, bassoon, oboe and cello but also by deranged vocals that trill away in what is presumably Russian. Conventional song formulas and melody are conspicuous by their absence and this is predominantly made up of quirky improvisations that never come anywhere close to compromise.
The funereal menace of 'The Mourners' provides a sinister overture and really could have been expanded beyond two minutes; the longer pieces such as 'Closed Case' and the violin led 'Ariel's Last Dream' diverge unnecessarily between chaos and calm and never really work. The epic 'Condemended' concentrates on the bands classical elements and in some of the segments there are glimpses of structure before the music veers off into another direction completely.
Rational Diet provide a good reminder that spectacular musicianship and experimentation are not always a successful combination and overall At Work is just too eccentric to really recommend.
1. Pukhow (3:43)
2. Dear Kontrabandist (6:28)
3. Wet Moss (1:19)
4. The Mourners (1:49)
5. Closed case (7:36)
6. Ariel´s Last Dream: Birobidjan (5:20)
7. Horse Army ((5:29)
8. Condemended (10:47)
9. On Tuesdays (3:41)