Exposé Online banner

Air Canda — Air Canda
(RAIG R084, 2014, CD)

by Jon Davis, Published 2016-08-05

Air Canda Cover art

I just recently discovered this Russian band, and it has turned out to be one of those “Where have you been all my life” things. Given that this 2014 release is their only album to date, I can take some consolation that there isn’t a whole back catalog to catch up on. Talk about hitting the right buttons to get me interested! Air Canda is a St Petersburg band crossing jazz and rock in an interesting way — the flavor of rock that they use is math rock, with twisty arrangements full of odd meters and abrupt changes, and their jazz is of the noisy modern variety. Some references might be Raoul Björkenheim, Panzerballett, and Už Jsme Doma; think of Ahleuchatistas (back when it was a trio) with a sax added, and you’ll be in the ballpark. Unlike many bands playing music this tricky, they manage to groove on their irregular rhythms, and they have a sense of fun as well, doing things like throwing a tango section into the middle of “Fata Morgana.” Stepan Zhzhyonov is an inventive and unpredictable guitarist, laying down a Crimsonian pattern one minute, wah-wah funk the next, then tossing off a jagged solo mangled by freaky effects. Saxman Alexander Belousov plays acoustically, but keeps up with the guitar on crazy rhythms and wailing solos. The rhythm section consists of Andrei Belka (bass) and Roman Oboskalov (drums), and they make a solid team, having a way of putting accents in unexpected places and avoiding standard patterns. As an added bonus, the entire album was recorded live in the studio. This can have both good and bad points. On the one hand, the energy and feeling are superb, and you know if you saw them in a club, this is exactly what they’d sound like. The small negative is that there is a somewhat demo-ish feeling to the album, which a little post-production might have beefed up. But that is a very small negative. On the whole, this is an outstanding release, well worth the attention of fans of the kind of jazz you find on Cuneiform, Moonjune, or RareNoise.


Filed under: New releases, 2014 releases

Related artist(s): Air Canda

More info
http://raig.bandcamp.com/album/air-canda-air-canda

Latest news

2020-07-22
Tim Smith RIP – Tim Smith, leader of the eccentric band Cardiacs, has died at the age of 59 after many years of health problems. Cardiacs was known for intense and complicated music that combined punk energy with the rhythmic and harmonic sophistication of progressive rock. » Read more

2020-07-12
Judy Dyble RIP – Singer-songwriter Judy Dyble, who was a founding member of Fairport Convention and one of the distinctive voices of the 60s folk revival in Britain, has died at the age of 71. Her passing came at the end of a long illness, though which she continued to work. » Read more

2020-07-06
Ennio Morricone RIP – Famed composer Ennio Morricone has died at the age of 91. The creator of scores for more than 500 movies, some of his works have become the most recognizable sounds in the history of cinema. His soundtracks for Sergio Leone's Westerns made from 1964 to 1971, are iconic landmarks in film music, but he also composed for dramas, comedies, and other genres. He won the Academy Award for Best Original Score in 2016 for The Hateful Eight. » Read more

2020-06-14
Keith Tippett RIP – One of the giants of British jazz has left us. Keith Graham Tippetts, known professionally as Keith Tippett, died today at the age of 72. His work from the late 60s into the 70s and beyond includes some of the greatest jazz produced in the UK, and stands as an impressive oevre to this day. » Read more

2020-05-15
Phil May of The Pretty Things RIP – We were saddened to learn that Phil May, lead singer and founding member of The Pretty Things, has died at the age of 75. The band's 1968 album S.F. Sorrow is one of the enduring classics of the psychedelic era, and the group existed in various forms until finally retiring in 2018. » Read more


Previously in Exposé...

Horslips - Roll Back – It was a sad day in 1980 when I read in Melody Maker that Horslips were calling it a day. The premier Irish folk-rock band had survived a decade without a single personnel change, gone through...  (2008) » Read more



Listen & discover



Print issues