Wednesday, August 12, 2020
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cover
Artist: TriAngular Bent (@)
Title: s/t
Format: CD
Label: self-released
Rated: *****
TriAngular Bent is a trio composed of Don Preston on piano, computer, electronics and gong; Jeff Boynton on cello and custom bent circuit instruments; and Philip Mantione on computer, custom software, electronics and guitar. With this list of instruments, we get some sense of what we are in for. My attention was immediately piqued when I realized that Don Preston had worked with Frank Zappa and the Mothers of Invention, so I had high hopes for this disc. Thankfully, TriAngular Bent delivered. “Set 1” opens it off, and sounds like soundtrack music that goes off the rails, with peaceful drone mixed with high pitched noises and the occasional gong hit. This is the music of a hallucination that hasn’t decided if it’s going to be a good trip or a bad trip. Next up, we have rapid fire bass and bears that keep “Set 2” aggressive from the start. Analog noises filter in and out, giving it the feel of a 1950s sci-fi film. “Don and Jeff” switches gears, opening with a melancholy cello, but then dominated by piano and snippets of strings. “Set 1B” takes a kitchen sink approach, with a lot going on. Take some cello, loops of someone yelling about jealousy, random bleeps and bloops, a malfunctioning drum machine, and put it all over a bed of circuit bent electronics. Fun stuff. “Guitar and Other Stuff,” is like an incredibly long guitar solo over the 60-cycle hum of an overdriven amp.Partway through, we get some appegiated analog sounds. This is what it would sound like if Zoviet France suddenly decided in the middle of an album to invite Def Leppard to do a solo. “Don and the Voyager” is probably the low point on the album, and pretty much consists of Preston noodling around on a Moog. Not terribly interesting. “Set 7” is more minimal than the other “sets.” If a video game company commissioned Oval to write a funk soundtrack to an 8-bit game, I imagine that it would sound something like this. “Piano Solo” closes it off with a jazzy piano solo. Overall, this is a lot of fun, and well worth picking up. This album weighs in at around 60 minutes.

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