Exposé Online banner

K Leimer — The Useless Lesson
(Palace of Lights PoL o7o1, 2007, CD)

by Peter Thelen, Published 2008-01-01

The Useless Lesson Cover art

At first listen, it might seem like The Useless Lesson takes two paths, one of melodic avant-garde chamber explorations, and another of more spacious ambient territory, interleaved throughout the album, the odd tracks being the former and the even tracks the latter. Further close listens, however, reveal a lot more secrets between the grooves, clues, and keys that offer clear evidence that all seven tracks are indeed part of the same dream sequence, linked together like a cinematic continuum that has a unifying theme. Using layered keyboards, guitar feedback, occasional muted percussion, strings (violin, cello, or excellent samples thereof), and sound processing, the composer seems to strike a theme of solitude and introspection, with an evolutionary guiding spirit that directs and guides the listener through portals from one section to the next. Titles may offer clues, but to this listener they have only further obscured what the concept might be, although it matters not – the music speaks for itself. The overall subtlety and delicacy of the carefully layered sounds that comprise each section are at times wondrous and beautiful, yet never pretty, and at other times paralyzing, haunting and transfixing. Each repeat listen reveals something new that hasn’t been apparent before, even after several dozen spins. Overall, a very satisfying listen on any number of different levels.


Filed under: New releases, Issue 35, 2007 releases

Related artist(s): K Leimer / Savant, Leo Abrahams

Latest news

2018-10-17
Eurock Documentary Seeks Funding – We've been fans and fellow travelers with Archie Patterson and his Eurock project on the journey to discover great music. After many years of promoting and trying to spread the word,a new phase is beginning: a documentary film. Things like this don't just happen, and money does not magically appear to make it happen, so it's up to the fans to get it done. » Read more

2018-09-29
Marty Balin RIP – One of the architects of the 60s psychedelic sound of San Francisco has died at the age of 76. Marty Balin was a singer, songwriter, and guitarist who was one of the founders of Jefferson Airplane. After the split of the original Airplane, Balin went on to form the highly successful Jefferson Starship. » Read more

2018-09-25
Help the Psychic Equalizer Avoid Extinction – Last year we reviewed the debut album by Psychic Equalizer, a musical project of Hugo Selles. He's now working on the ambitious follow-up to that release, and is seeking funding from listeners around the world. » Read more

2018-09-05
Krautrock Documentary Seeks Funding – The next installment of the Progressive Warriors documentary series will focus on the vast body of music that falls under the banner of "krautrock." As most of our readers will know, previous films have tackled RIO and the Canterbury scene, as well as what we might call "mainstream" prog rock. » Read more

2018-07-31
Tomasz Stańko RIP – Tomasz Stańko, one of the greats of Eastern European jazz, has died at the age of 76. Stańko's career started in Krzysztof Komeda's quintet, where he contributed trumpet from 1963-1967, when he formed his own group. He worked extensively with Edward Vesala, Don Cherry, Zbigniew Seifert, Chico Freeman, Howard Johnson, Cecil Taylor, and many others. Many of his recordings have been released by ECM, an association that began in the mid-70s. » Read more


Previously in Exposé...

Manticore - Time to Fly – Manticore is a new outfit from Sweden and with that name a heavy Emerson, Lake and Palmer influence is bound to be present. The first track, "New Foundation," ripples with ELP right down to the main...  (1994) » Read more



Listen & discover



Print issues