Metamorphic Rock: Live at NEARfest 2010 (MoonJune Records MJR 040)

Press reviews

 












1.   Irreducible Complexity (J. DeJoie) 3:39
2.   Manifest Density (D. Rea) 3:45
3.   Save the Yuppie Breeding Grounds (R. Davidson) 4:02
4.   Disillusioned Avatar (A. DeJoie) / Dub Interlude (Moraine) / Ephebus Amoebus (K. Millard) 10:25
5.   Disoriental Suite: a) Bagua (Naxi traditional) b) Kan Hai De Re Zi (Chen Ming-chang) c) Views from Chicheng Precipice (D. Rea) 11:46
6.   Kuru (D. Rea) 4:31
7.   The Okanogan Lobe (D. Rea) 7:36
8.   Uncle Tang's Cabinet of Dr. Caligari (D. Rea) 3:44
9.   Blues for a Bruised Planet (D. Rea) 4:35
10. Waylaid (D. Rea) 5:31
11. Middlebräu (D. Rea / W. Horist) 9:09 

Stephen Cavit: drums, percussion
Alicia DeJoie: violin
James DeJoie: baritone saxophone, flute, percussion
Kevin Millard: NS/Stick (8-string extended-range bass)
Dennis Rea: guitar

Produced by Moraine and Steve Fisk
Executive Producer: Leonardo Pavkovic

Recorded live at North East Art Rock Festival (NEARfest) 2010, Bethlehem, PA, June 20, 2010
Front-of-house engineer: Phil Leibowicz
Live recording engineer: Brett Kull, Area 602 Studios
Mix engineer: Steve Fisk
Mixed at Arundel Gardens, Seattle, WA, July-August 2011
Mastered by Barry Corliss at Master Works, Seattle
Cover design: Leonardo Pavkovic
Front cover photo: Dennis Rea (Tracy Arm, Alaska)
Musician photos: Joe del Tufo / Studio M Live
Moraine NEARfest visuals: Courtney Barnebey
Alchemy: Greg Jones

Heaps o' gratitude to: Leonardo Pavkovic; Steve Fisk; Kevin Feeley, Ray Loboda, Jim Robinson, Paul Sears, Chris DeRose, Charlie Johnson, and all the wonderful NEARfest staff, artists, and audience; Courtney Barnebey; Tom Gagliardi (Gagliarchives Radio); Rafaella Berry (ProgMistress); Ruth Davidson; Jay Jaskot; David Gaines and Alaina Allen; Matthew Corbin Clark; Chen Ming-chang; Young Sub Lee; Eddie Cavalcanti

(c)(r) MoonJune Records 2011

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MoonJune Records Press Release

Since releasing their widely acclaimed debut CD manifest deNsity (MoonJune Records MJR028) in 2009, Seattle quintet Moraine have quickly built a reputation as one of the most electrifying and original instrumental rock bands anywhere, winning over listeners across the globe with their unique amalgam of art rock, forward-thinking jazz, world music, and a host of other musical ingredients. The band up the ante with their highly anticipated new release Metamorphic Rock: Live at NEARfest, a blazing concert performance engineered for maximum sonic impact by legendary Pacific Northwest producer Steve Fisk.
 
Metamorphic Rock captures Moraine in peak form at NEARfest 2010, the world’s preeminent showcase for progressive rock, where they wowed listeners with their inventive compositions, formidable musicianship, and tightly meshed instrumental interplay. The first Moraine release to feature woodwind virtuoso James DeJoie and powerhouse drummer Stephen Cavit, Metamorphic Rock marks a major advance in the group’s evolution from their chamber-rock origins toward a more forceful and dynamic sound. The album consists largely of new and previously unreleased material, including striking arrangements of ancient and contemporary Asian music, augmented by a number of radically retooled tunes from manifest deNsity.

Moraine have been compared to King Crimson, the Mahavishnu Orchestra, and Terje Rypdal, but though these comparisons are sometimes apt (and humbly appreciated by the band), the group has forged its own distinct sonic identity, whether engaging in jazz-inflected improvisation, executing intricate ensemble passages, or dishing out crushing, twisted riffs, while displaying a warmth and lyricism often lacking in avant-rock. As Metamorphic Rock amply demonstrates, Moraine, like their geological namesake, are truly a force of nature.
(5 stars) "This Seattle-based progressive-rock outfit offers a refreshing perspective on a multifaceted genre, where cherished stylizations from the past are merged with a futuristic outlook. ...a hard-hitting but fluid set. By incorporating grace and power into its arsenal, the ensemble's buoyancy is lightly dappled with jazz and classical elements. ... Moraine carries the torch for a newly envisioned era of progressive-rock. Hence, the artists unite the best of many musical worlds into a group-centric characterization that bears a clearly defined mark of authenticity." - Glenn Astarita, JazzReview.com (complete review)

(8.5/10 stars) "In these times of grossly overrated, cookie-cutter acts, Moraine's riveting, intensely individual jazz-rock-meets-chamber-prog approach, spiced with heady helpings of traditional Far Eastern music, set them apart as the most genuinely progressive band on the [NEARfest 2010] bill. One year later, that career-defining performance has been captured on CD ... the 11 tracks featured on Metamorphic Rock highlight Moraine's unique dynamics and distinctive, broad-ranging compositional approach. ... Moraine are one of those rare bands that have managed to develop their own individual sound, making the most of each member's background and inclinations. ... warmly recommended to all open-minded prog fans, especially those who privilege instrumental music." - Raffaella Berry, Dutch Progressive Rock Pages (complete review)

[In a message to MoonJune Records] "OH MY GOD!!!! Where do you find this stuff? ...some of the best music I've heard in modern jazz all year (maybe all decade!). ... This is exactly what I'm looking for… fresh new ideas in improvised music." - Russ Davis, Voice of America / Modern Jazz Radio

"...once in a while something hitherto unheard of will land in your inbox that simply takes your breath away. ... Such a thing is Metamorphic Rock, whose irreducible complexity, to borrow one of the song titles, is of such a seriously magical content I just can’t put it down. This band is filling mega stadiums in a parallel universe where Simon Cowell is on trial for crimes against art. ...the band’s easy intuitive style is one that should, if there was any justice, make Moraine a household name, at least amongst the prog community. ...a stunning musical tour-de-force… damn, just hit repeat!" - Roger Trenwith, ProgSphere (complete review)

"I've played the Moraine in store a half dozen times already and we sold out our first batch and just got in our second. Don't miss out on [this] fine, challenging and feisty release." - Bruce Lee Gallanter, Downtown Music Gallery, NYC

"Seattle’s Moraine not only make Washington State proud, but also the whole American progressive music scene joyful. ... It’s simply an impressive dead on eleven song tour de force. ... GET THIS! Highly Recommended!" - Lee Henderson, Prognaut (complete review)

(5 stars) "A sensation in the making" - Dmitry M. Epstein, DMME.net (Israel)

"an impressive antidote to any and all forms of generic music. Its mood is ever evolving and the experience is most liberating. Just when you think you have it figured out, it shifts in intent and direction in a most embracing way." - Rob Hudson, ModMove (Australia)

(19/20 stars) "...tremendous virtuosity ... a must for fans of this kind of music" - Ingo Andruschkewitsch, Musik an Sich (Germany)

"an alluring dose of captivating jazz rock that is guaranteed to mesmerize and satisfy the listener" - Matt Howarth, Sonic Curiosity (complete review)

"Moraine here slices through a number of revered antecedents (Kraan, Univers Zero, Mike Keneally, King Crimson, Jasun Martz, Magma, etc.) while crafting a version of the ever-evolving neoclassical niche progressive musics occupy in a way that has to be making Messrs. Vander, Fripp, Denis, and the entire esteemed company grin in serene gratification amid Metamorphic Rock's artfully pleasing jangled paces." - Mark S. Tucker, Acoustic Music Review (complete review)

"Metamorphic Rock presents the live performance of an outstanding group of creative avant-garde musicians who can easily navigate the waters of high energy progressive rock, jazz fusion and exploratory improvised music." - Angel Romero, Progressive Music Central

"I have to bow my head for this instrumental band, this is just pure exellence." - Henrik Kahldal, Complicated Music (Denmark)

"[a] great adventure in electric sound ... Very much recommended." - Grego Applegate Edwards

"One minute it rocks and the next it's full of intricate musicianship and then it combines both to make something wonderfully unique. What a great disc!" - Jerry Lucky, The Progressive Rock Files

(4 stars) "Metamorphic Rock is filled to the brim with sounds that are truly different and metamorphic by definition. ... If you like a literal mixed bag of sound, appreciate jazz fusion or progressive rock done very well in a live setting, then you will love Metamorphic Rock." - Ashley Arsenault, MuzikReviews.com

(4/5 stars) "Straddling the jazz avant-garde and progressive rock, Moraine opens new avenues. The introduction of lyricism into [this type of] rock is really innovative - and it was about time." - Michael Laroche, On-Top Audio (France)

(4 stars) "Moraine gives us over an hour of intense eclectic progressive rock which reminds me of the music Mahavishnu Orchestra gave us back in the 1970s. ... this live album is great, with an emphasis on breaking down barriers between jazz and prog." - Torodd Fuglesteg, ProgArchives.com

"A big fat recommendation" - Andreas Schiffman, Muzik reviews (Germany)

(7/10 stars) "Facing Metamorphic Rock's wealth of writing and atypical interpretations, one word comes to mind: amazing!" - Music Waves (France)

"Metamorphic Rock is a Prog-Jazz-Fusion tour-de-force that showcases a mature band in which all members perform in perfect integration and harmony with each other. ... precise sax-violin-guitar interplay, amazing bass harmonization and swing, and explosive and solid, yet refined, drumming ... a snapshot of an impressive band in fast evolution, indispensable for Progressive, Jazz-Fusion, Canterbury, and R.I.O. fans" - Marcelo Trotta, Progressive Rock Brazil

(5 stars) - ProgRock.org (Poland)
© Moraine 2010