Exposé Online banner

Rainbow Danger Club — The New Atlantis
(Bandcamp no#, 2010, DL)

Rainbow Danger Club — Where Maps End
(Tenzenmen 067TZM, 2011, CD)

by Jon Davis, Published 2013-05-03

The New Atlantis Cover artWhere Maps End Cover art

In their promotional photos, the members of Rainbow Danger Club pose in costumes reminiscent of characters from Jules Verne stories, and I've heard they do the same when performing live. Which is fitting, since the stories they tell in their songs have a very Vernian steampunk sort of feel to them, with a dash of surrealism thrown in. The stories aren't spelled out precisely, so I'm not sure how the drunken captain relates to the people in the cloud city and if the neighbors on the rooftops are in the same city where babies grow on trees. (Actually, some of this is clear if you read the booklet to Where Maps End, but it's fun to mash up some of the odd images they toss out.) The New Atlantis (26 minutes) was put out as a preface to RDC's full length debut, Where Maps End, but even with this EP, they present a sort of story, mostly only hinted at by the titles of some of the instrumental bridges between the songs. The EP features four of the songs that would appear on Maps, though at least two of them are differing versions. The core of the band consists of main songwriter Jesse Munson (guitar, vocals), Dennis Ming Nichols (bass, vocals), Michael Corayer (trumpet, keyboards), and Michael Ford (drums), and they are joined by guests to fill in other parts. The arrangements are lush and varied, full of lovely touches that remind me at times of The Decemberists, Arcade Fire, New Pornographers, Klaatu, and even a bit of proto-prog like Gracious, Gnidrolog, and early Procol Harum (Shine on Brightly) — if you can imagine something that brings all that together. In any case, the result is frequently glorious: the triple-play of "Drown the Creatures," "Lego Sunrise," and "Neighbors on the Rooftops" is simply stunning. Many other such moments appear throughout their music. Another thing that should be mentioned is the fact that while it was largely recorded "at Jesse's apartment," the sound is amazingly full — no lo-fi posing here, they go for the full-on band-as-orchestra effect. I can't recommend this highly enough. They may not be playing in 15/8, but there's enough depth and craft in this music that prog fans should find it a worthy addition to their collections.


Filed under: New releases, 2010 releases, 2011 releases

Related artist(s): Rainbow Danger Club

More info
http://rainbowdangerclub.bandcamp.com

Latest news

2019-03-20
Freedom to Spend Unearths June Chikuma's Archives – Jun (June) Chikuma is well known for her video game and anime soundtracks, but she also released an album of experimental electronic music back in 1986 called Divertimento where she indulged the kind of spontaneity that wouldn't work in a soundtrack. RVNG Int'l label Freedom to Spend is bringing this overlooked item to broader attention with a deluxe reissue. » Read more

2019-03-03
Seaprog 2019 Lineup Almost Complete – The Seaprog festival in Seattle is scheduled for June 7-9 this year, and they've announced their lineup of performers. The revitalized Trettioåriga Kriget will cap Friday night, perennial favorites Marbin are on Saturday, and District 97 will finish off the fest on Sunday night. In support, they've booked a stellar variety of artists from the Northwest and around the world, including EchoTest, Markus Reuter and Trey Gunn, and the live debut of the amazing Troot project. » Read more

2019-02-21
You Can Be Part of an Ambient Electronic Project – The Gesture of History is a new electronic project put together by Sam Rosenthal of Black Tape for a Blue Girl, Steve Roach, and violist Sam Shadow. The music started as an instrumental track Rosenthal was working on for a Black Tape album, but took on a life of its own and demanded further enhancements. The majority of the funds raised will go to manufacturing costs for LP and CD editions, as well as other items as detailed on the Kickstarter page. » Read more

2019-01-31
Keyboardist Ingo Bischof R.I.P. – Keyboard player Ingo Bischof, best known as the longtime keyboard player of German band Kraan, passed away on January 29th, 2019. Bischof was born January 2, 1951 in Berlin-Kreuzberg and joined Kraan in 1975. » Read more

2019-01-11
Jazz Composer Mark Lomax, II Releases Epic 12CD Set – In addition to being a fine jazz drummer, Dr. Mark Lomax, II is a composer in residence at Ohio State University, where he has been very busy on the compositional front. The year 2019 is the 400th anniversary of the arrival of the first ship bringing African slaves to North America, and in commemoration of this, Lomax has produced 400: An Afrikan Epic, a 12 volume set of CDs featuring a variety of different musical ensembles. » Read more


Previously in Exposé...

Ars Nova - Transi – If this trio of all female musicians were a pop group, I doubt if anyone would think twice, but in the testosterone driven underground of Prog, the idea is practically a novelty (at least for...  (1995) » Read more



Listen & discover



Print issues