Exposé print issues (1993-2011)
Stop Motion Orchestra — Instant Everything!
(Bandcamp no#, 2014, CD / DL)
In 2013 there was a viral YouTube video of an elderly lady playing drums in a Wisconsin music store. She was dubbed Grandma Drummer. Austin’s Stop Motion Orchestra used this video as inspiration for the opening track “Mystery Grandma” on their debut album. Austin’s burgeoning progressive rock scene is producing a variety of new and refreshing music, far from what you would expect out of Texas. Case in point is Stop Motion Orchestra. Formed in 2013 and led by Mohadev, Stop Motion Orchestra composes and performs Rock in Opposition instrumentals. Their debut album is a set of eleven intelligent instrumentals. I saw them perform live on October 2, 2014 in a small venue in Austin and they gave a great performance which I captured on video. Mohadev cites The Cardiacs as a major influence and Stop Motion Orchestra covers "T.V.T.V." on this release. There are so many different and fresh ideas on this album I don’t know where to begin. Stop Motion Orchestra is the quintet of Louk, Alden, Mohadev, Josh, and Henna. Performing live they are stripped down to guitar, drums, sax, violin, and keyboards. In the studio Mohadev plays a variety of additional instruments. Their music is characterized by dissonant guitar, abrupt rhythm changes, fiery violin solos, crazed sax passages, and some cool bass synth riffs. In addition to the influences they site on Facebook (Albert Marcoeur, Cardiacs, Fred Frith, Zappa, and Magma) I detect a strong French electronic influence, ala Besombes and Rizet, as well as Present, Weather Report, and even some klezmer. Most of the eleven songs are in the three- to four-minute range, which is just the proper length. And there is a surprise on track 8, “Mono Interval,” that is an exquisite piano interlude. The two outstanding tracks in my opinion are “News and Ice Cream,” featuring amazing violin and guitar interaction, and the closing track “Mono No Aware” with acoustic guitar and a strong Morricone – Spaghetti Western vibe.
by Henry Schneider, Published 2014-12-04
by Peter Thelen, Published 2014-11-03
Related artist(s): Stop Motion Orchestra
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