Moraine, Groundswell, 2014
As this is released by Moonjune Records, it is not hard to predict where this is going. But as far as progressive jazz rock permits, this is actually quite enjoyable. The 5 piece all instrumental band have a violinist and a sax ‘n flute player amongst them, besides guitar / keyboards, stick and drums) and these instruments create either that bit of a progressive feel, or link to jazz.
Many times it is hard to get into albums from the label because of the lack of instant melodies and repetition. Things can sound blurred at first and it really takes endurance to get connected. That probably tells you more about me than about the quality of their releases by the way.
Moraine have accomplished an album that will appeal to both the trained listener, as well as a more casual one. So there are themes as well as extended soloing. There are song formats as well as free styled improvisations. There is groove and it sometimes even rocks!
As a whole the album works for me and has several memorable songs. I like Gnashville, Fountain Of Euthanasia and In That Distant Place for instance. So skilled musicians and a recommendable release, their third I read, even if it’s the first one I hear. If you enjoy the other releases from Moonjune, or just instrumental music with influences from both the progressive as the jazz domain, you know what to do.