Exposé Online banner

Rains — Apokalyptische Stadt
(Mellow MMP 400, 1999, CD)

by Peter Thelen, Published 2001-12-01

Apokalyptische Stadt Cover art

This quartet from Verona, Italy plays a freewheeling experimental grunge-jazz infected rock, driven by dual guitars, tenor sax and drums. Half the time they are out on the edge, the other half finds them in cool funky grooves, strangely reminiscent of bands like Kraan, though most of the time this is a bit more laid back, with saxes leading the melodic assault. While no bassist is credited, there’s definitely a strong bass presence, possibly supplied by the lower registers of one of the guitarists, or maybe the credits have a typo (sure sounds like a real bass to this writer!). When things get chaotic one might be reminded of the improvisational moments of some Cutler and Frith projects of late, with guitars and saxes going off in every direction, and the drums attempting to tie it all together. The balance between the two extremes is good – one feeds the other, and in the end a stronger union of diverse elements exists, which should offer strong appeal for jazz minded and experimental travelers alike, but also the rock elements are strong enough to anchor it all to a driving beat. There’s a strong sense of humor too, as in “Noire”, which ties a twisted “My Sharona”-like riff to walking sax and guitar solos. Tracks like “Wild Joint” offer an almost psychedelic jazz character with an anarchic zeuhlish twist. This took a few plays to warm up to, but in the end there’s plenty to hold the listener’s interest. File under different.


Filed under: New releases, Issue 23, 1999 releases

Related artist(s): Rains

Latest news

2018-07-09
Soft Machine Set to Release New Music – It's been 50 years since The Soft Machine changed the face of music with their first album. Their blend of psychedelic rock and jazz was unique, and while the band went through many changes before disbanding in 1981 — by which time there were no original members remaining — they remained an innovative force with a style all their own. » Read more

2018-07-01
7d Surfaces Happy Rhodes Back Catalog – We've covered singer Happy Rhodes before, both for her solo work and recently with The Security Project, but her 11 albums have been hard to track down. Until now. 7d features high-quality downloads of all her releases, and several of them are also available on CD. » Read more

2018-06-25
Fred Chalenor RIP – We have news of another sad passing in the world of creative music. Bassist Fred Chalenor, whose creativity featured on albums by Tone Dogs, Caveman Shoestore, and many more, died on June 23, 2018 after a long battle with Alzheimer's. Tributes have poured in from the many musicians and fans whose lives he touched. » Read more

2018-06-13
Jon Hiseman RIP – One of the great drummers of the rock era has died. Jon Hiseman was a veteran of such ground-breaking groups as Colosseum (I and II), Tempest, John Mayal's Bleusbreakers, and was a founding member of the innovative large band United Jazz + Rock Ensemble. » Read more

2018-06-05
Koenjihyakkei Seeks Funding for New Album – It's been quite a few years since the last new studio album by the amazing Koenjihyakkei. Now they are preparing Dhormimviskha for worldwide release, and they're asking fans to pre-order via a Kickstarter campaign to help it happen. » Read more


Previously in Exposé...

Jorge Reyes - Ek Tunkul – I must have been sleeping at Best-of-'97 voting time as this old favorite managed to slip right out from under my nose. Ek Tunkul was Jorge Reyes' very first (and best) solo recording from back in...  (1999) » Read more



Listen & discover



Print issues