Exposé Online banner

Mats / Morgan — [schack tati]
(Cuneiform Rune 385, 2014, CD)

by Jon Davis, Published 2014-09-29

[schack tati] Cover art

One recurring trope of martial arts movies is the transcendent master who has skills beyond those of normal mortals, capabilities that defy gravity and reason. Leaping buildings, executing maneuvers while balanced on the tip of a pole, running on the surface of a lake, moving faster than bullets in flight — whatever the fight choreographers can dream up and the special effects crew can pull off. Morgan Ågren and Mats Öberg are like that with music. Listening to [schack tati] is like watching a fight scene from Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon, or better yet, The Matrix. It's pretty darn amazing, and beautiful, but it just doesn't seem real. I suppose on some level, you could say it isn't real, at least not in the sense of being played live by real musicians — it is carefully constructed music built in a studio, aiming for amazing sounds outside the constraints of what hands and fingers can do. As their live recordings attest, these guys are astoundingly adept, but they also take advantage of the full capabilities of a modern studio (in this case, the one Ågren has built in a shed on his property). Guests, including Simon Steensland, provide some added sounds, but it is primarily Mats and Morgan overdubbing, tweaking, and assembling sounds. A couple of tracks feature only Ågren, on various instruments and programming; another features Ågren and guests without Öberg. Their background as Zappa proteges is apparent, but their attention wanders throughout our world of music, borrowing freely and modifying in wildly creative ways. All in all, this is an astounding journey, full of amazing and amusing sounds, another chapter in the fantastic journey of these magical Swedes.


Filed under: New releases, 2014 releases

Related artist(s): Morgan Ågren, Simon Steensland, Mats / Morgan Band

More info
http://cuneiformrecords.bandcamp.com/album/schack-tati

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...

Isildurs Bane - Lost Eggs – Although they take their name directly from the Tolkien novels, don't be too quick to write this band off. Lost Eggs is a compilation of material recorded from '76 to '93, spanning the history of this...  (1995) » Read more



Listen & discover



Print issues