Exposé Online banner

Mahogany Frog — Senna
(Moonjune MJR048, 2012, CD)

by Jon Davis, Published 2013-11-13

Senna Cover artI've been hearing about Mahogany Frog for a few years now, but Senna is the first of their releases that I've heard. It starts with a stuttering keyboard part that morphs into a slow procession of chords on keyboards backed by skittering electronic percussion. The piece builds over the course of several minutes, adding in electric guitar, drums, and more keys. A distorted slide guitar enters dramatically, giving a vaguely Floydian tinge to the mounting mid-tempo pulse, and then, about three minutes in, suddenly the band slips into double-time for a frenetic close to "Houndstooth Part 1." "Part 2" builds its way up from a fuzzy 7/4 riff on the bass, with guitars and keys making a firm declaration of prog-rock intentions. The keyboards, which include some very unconventional sounds, are particularly effective, providing a classic sound without actually using typical instruments. There's a string sound that's heavily phased, and something a bit like an old Vox organ compressed and flanged, and something resembling the fuzz Lowrey organ from early Soft Machine. The arrangements also include occasional environmental noises, imparting a touch of psychedelia. Often music with such high degrees of processing applied to the source material can sound sterile and lifeless, but Mahogany Frog manage to make every part sound organic but twisted, as if heard through an inter-dimensional gateway from some other realm not quite like our own. This totally unique combination of elements is masterfully shaped into one of the finest and most progressive (adjective, not genre) releases I've heard in some time.

Filed under: New releases, 2012 releases

Related artist(s): Mahogany Frog

Latest news

2019-11-07
Glenn Smith RIP – Glenn Smith, founder, mandolinist, and primary composer of the DeLand, Florida based prog / fusion band Magnatar, passed away on October 18th 2019 at the age of 68, after a brief illness.  » Read more

2019-11-04
Dino Brassea RIP – Word reaches us of the passing of Dino Brassea, who sang and played flute in Cast for many years. By our count, Brassea appeared on 11 Cast albums between 1994 and 2002. He also released music as a solo artist. » Read more

2019-10-06
Ginger Baker RIP – Legendary English drummer Ginger Baker has died at the age of 80. After coming to fame with Cream in the 60s alongside Eric Clapton and Jack Bruce, he became one of the most recognized and influential drummers of the rock era. On September 25, his family announced that he was critically ill, and on October 6 his death was confirmed. » Read more

2019-08-20
Alex's Hand Seeks Spa Treatment – American / European band Alex's Hand has a new album in the works called Hungarian Spa, which looks to be their biggest and best yet, featuring a large roster of guest musicians. They're seeking funding to take the project on the road, and are looking for help from the crowd of wisdom. » Read more

2019-06-05
Legendary Co-Founder of The 13th Floor Elevators Passes Away at Age 71 – Sadly, Roky Erickson passed away on May 31, 2019. Known as the father of psychedelic music and co-founder of the ground breaking 13th Floor Elevators, Roky had a profound influence on music from the 60s to today. Plagued by his own personal demons, Roky had a difficult life and is now free of these burdens. » Read more


Previously in Exposé...

Christian Vander / Simon Goubert - Welcome – These guys have just about got it right on this one! For the last several years, Christian Vander has been following the spirit of John Coltrane, particularly the Impulse years, Both he and Goubert...  (1996) » Read more



Listen & discover



Print issues