Atomic Ape — Swarm
(Web of Mimicry WOM044, 2014, CD)
by Peter Thelen, Published 2014-05-20Led by composer, producer and multi-instrumentalist Jason Schimmel, also a current member of Secret Chiefs 3, and formerly of Estradasphere and the short lived Orange Tulip Conspiracy, Atomic Ape picks up more or less where the latter band left off. The eleven tracks herein represent a twisted ride of genre-bending instrumental rock blended with influences from around the globe, and the players seem to be having a lot of fun doing it. Nothing is off limits here, although I have to say that the metal extremities and general weirdness one might have found on a typical Estradasphere album are toned down and refined into something far more enjoyable. Joining Schimmel are many of his former bandmates from throughout the years: Estradasphere alumni Timba Harris (violin), Adam Stacey (keys), John Whoolilurie (sax), and Lee Smith (drums) are all here; also on board are Trey Spruance (guitar) and Eyvind Kang (viola) from Secret Chiefs 3. Percussionist Danny Frankel, bassist Devin Hoff, and numerous other outstanding instrumentalists contribute to this wild ride as well, with just about every instrument imaginable being represented, track depending. Most of what’s here is fast paced and energetic, brimming with brilliance. Jazz and big-band stylings make frequent appearances throughout, with touches of Euro-ethnic folk and middle eastern themes. One might hope that, unlike Orange Tulip Conspiracy, Atomic Ape lasts for more than a single album. But if it doesn’t, so be it. Swarm is a powerful statement by any measure.
Related artist(s): Atomic Ape / Red Fiction
New Aristocrats Live Album on the Way – No foolin'! These supreme musicians toured Europe early in 2020, just before touring ceased to be a thing musicians could do, and there were some hot performances captured. On May 7, some of these will be releases as Freeze! Live in Europe 2020. » Read more
Jewlia Eisenberg RIP – The sad news has come out that Jewlia Eisenberg has died. As a founding member of Charming Hostess, Eisenberg changed the face of music, bringing together Balkan klezmer, American folk, and experimental rock in a distinctive blend that garnered much praise. » Read more
SoundQuest Fest 2021 – SoundQuest Fest, first experienced as a live festival in Tucson Arizona in 2010 was created by ambient music pioneer Steve Roach. This 2021 event will unite a worldwide gathering of artists and audience members together for a 3-day online event unique in the realm of ambient music. From March 26-28th a continuous flow of streamed performances, audio-video wonder worlds and deep immersion zones will burn bright on Roach’s YouTube channel. » Read more