Rameses III


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Basilica is a strange and slightly confusing release. It's really two albums in one: the first disc is a collection of four remixes of Rameses III tracks by Keith Berry, Gregg Kowalsky, Neil Campbell, and Robert Horton, the last of which is actually kind of a meta-remix: it's a remix by Rameses III of Horton's remix of "After the Red Rose." The remixed material varies pretty widely in flavor and tone, from Campbell's dense but bright take on "Tigers in the Snake Pit" to Berry's thick blanket of dark grey sound, flickering at the edges with glitchy lightning, on "Basilica." All are sonically challenging, but all are rewarding -- even Kowalski's "Rose Blood," which is difficult listening, is consistently interesting, as a multifaceted drone gives way to kaleidoscopic bell tones, which in turn eventually collapse into a chord wash. Those who find the first disc imposing, however, will find the second disc to be a revelation. It's a program of five live performances recorded at various London-area venues, all of them consisting of dense and gorgeous layers of consonant harmonic guitar clouds, which are huge and ponderous, but ultimately both inviting and uplifting, much like a more intense and heavy version of the '70s duo projects by Robert Fripp and Brian Eno. There's something rather special about this second disc in particular, something that pretty much defies critical analysis or even explanation: it has to be felt to be understood, and heard to be felt. Very highly recommended.

Track Listing - Disc 2

Sample Title/Composer Performer Time
1 4:14
2 11:29
3 7:12
4 12:50
5 5:02
blue highlight denotes track pick