Stick Men
Owari
MoonJune, 2020

March 5, 2021

Owari (MoonJune) is the new live album by Stick Men.

On February 26, 2020 the Stick Men were in Nagoya, Japan for what was supposed to be a long tour in Asia but due to the pandemic, it became a single show. The group is made up of very well know names in the world of prog music: Pat Mastellotto on drums, Tony Levin on stick and vocals, Markus Reiter on guitar, and with special guest Gary Husband on keyboards.

The performance was recorded and then released last October by MoonJune. The album name Owari means “the end” in Japanese. The record is particularly interesting both for the great improvisation component in the band’s performances and for the presence of Gary Husband, who “colors” the songs with new suggestions.

 

 

 

The album has very well-kept atmospheres, always melting rock, prog and improvisation. Husband’s keyboards balance well with the guitars and make the music more ethereal (“Hide the Trees”), and the group often alternates aggressive rhythms with milder and more introspective parts (the beautiful version of “Lark’s Tongues In Aspic, Part II “).

Emblematic of the entire record is “Prog Noir”: the track develops with the overlapping of the Levin riff / pedal, the hypnotic two-note keyboard riff, and the descending guitar arpeggio on a classic minor progression. On this basis the voice declaims the text, creating truly thrilling atmospheres that remain intense – and frightening! – for the entire duration of the piece.

Owari is a well recorded and well played record, a must if you love the mix of prog and improvisation, here played by authentic masters.
(EM)

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Stick Men Owari MoonJune 2020 

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