Qui

Love's Miracle

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    7
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AllMusic Review by

Every band has their influences, no matter how far they stray from their sources, and while Qui's first and strongest source of inspiration probably wasn't the Jesus Lizard, it's hard not to hear a bit of that band's furious and tightly unified chaos in Matt Cronk's jagged guitar figures and Paul Christensen's fierce but carefully punctuated drumming. It's even easier to spot the Jesus Lizard's impact on Qui's third album, Love's Miracle, since the duo has expanded into a trio with the addition of new vocalist David Yow, the former lead howler for the Jesus Lizard himself. Thankfully, Qui don't seem to be aping Yow's former band on this recording, and if they were, covering Frank Zappa and Pink Floyd wouldn't be likely to reinforce that band's impact on their sound (though both interpretations follow a decidedly different path from the originals). Working without a bass and possessing a free-wheeling if violent playfulness, Qui's approach embraces an openness and sense of space that gives Yow plenty of room to ply his trade as indie rock's most compelling lunatic, and while his feral yelp fills up the spaces in a way Cronk and Christensen's singing didn't, his presence pushes the players to make more of their own sound, and the result is full-bodied and absorbing despite the minimalism of the sonic frameworks. Yow hasn't transformed Qui into the Jesus Lizard Jr., but on Love's Miracle his intense and darkly witty style finds a comfortable home with this music, just as the musicians mesh easily with his singular vision; you don't have to be a fan of Yow's old stuff to appreciate this, though if you are you'll be glad to hear him at full impact again.

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