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

2018-11-16
The Seventeenth Dream of Dr Sardonicus Festival Tickets Now Available – Fruits de Mer Records and their merry crew of psychedelic explorers are getting set to present the next The Seventeenth Dream of Dr. Sardonicus Festival. The dates are set for August 2-4, 2019 at The Cellar Bar in Cardigan, Wales. They've also announced that the legendary Groundhogs will top the bill. » Read more

2018-11-02
Charles O'Meara (C.W. Vrtacek) RIP – A true musical original has left us. Charles O'Meara, who recorded under the name C.W. Vrtacek, was a wild-card musical talent, ranging from complex progressive rock to introspective modern compositions, with stops at many places inbetween. » Read more

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


Previously in Exposé...

Ozric Tentacles - Vitamin Enhanced – This six-CD set contains the early works of the band from the years 1984-89, heretofore only available on six cassettes that together cost more than this boxed set. For those not yet familiar with the...  (1994) » Read more



Listen & discover



Print issues