Mark Jenkins — Live in the USA
(AMP Records AMP-CDA052, 2006, 2CD)
by Henry Schneider, Published 2006-12-31English synthesist Mark Jenkins played a series of concerts across Pennsylvania in 2005. This 2 CD set documents that occasion. Live in the USA is much like mid-period Tangerine Dream, but from Mark’s perspective. There are lots of pulsing sequencers, soaring guitars, and washes of analog and digital electronics. On this concert tour, Mark is joined at different times by members of the Pennsylvania synthesizer community: Orbital Decay, The Amaranth Signal, Xeroid Entity, Fringe Element, Bill Fox, Dean Stiglitz, and Chris Mandra. The music is good, though it does take some effort to make it all the way through both discs in one sitting. There are a couple of tracks that are distinctly different from the rest and they happen to be the opening tracks on Disc One. The 57 second “Intro” is a montage of audio clips from radio ads that is immediately followed by “The Star Spangled Banner.” I bet that you have never heard our national anthem performed in this manner. The only obvious connection is Mark’s vocoded recitation of the lyrics as the music is without melody. Overall Amp Records could have done a better job packaging this release. Instead of a jewel case, it comes in a slim DVD case that makes it difficult to store with your other CDs. And in order to read any information about the album, you have to slide the cover out of the case as everything is printed on its reverse. These are minor problems and should not interfere with your enjoyment of the music.
Related artist(s): Mark Jenkins
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
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
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
Jorge Santana RIP – Jorge Santana, noted guitarist, leader of the band Malo and brother to Carlos Santana, died on May 14 at the age of 68. Jorge and Carlos worked together on a number of occasions, though Jorge's career was centered around Malo, solo work, and with Fania All-Stars. » Read more