The Theory of Reversed Effort is W.O.O. Revelator's fourth release but only the trio's first studio album. The first consequence of the decision to record in a studio rather than live is an enormous improvement in sound quality. Couple this with very inspired playing and the result is W.O.O. Revelator's best album to date. Over the years, the trio of Bonnie Kane (saxophone, flute, and electronics), Chris Forsyth (guitar), and Ray Sage (drums) have crafted a unique blend of space rock and free improvisation. The music can go from tonal rock jamming to atonal chaotic mayhem and back without the listener being able to pinpoint the moment where things went wild. Kane's playing is often very melodious and soulful, while Forsyth favors free playing -- going from textural feedback loops to busy atonal solos that fans of Thurston Moore will have no difficulty relating to. Sage adapts his drumming to the player leading the way at the time, although for this particular recording he seems to make it an objective to never settle on a steady rhythm. The Theory of Reversed Effort contains three long pieces (between ten and 17 minutes in length) and two shorter ones. Highlights include the tension building in "Complex Organisms," the trippy flute passage in the middle of "More One Way Than the Other," and Sage's percussion solo "The Unending Force." This CD should help W.O.O. Revelator get some deserved recognition and consideration as an exciting free rock trio.
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AllMusic Review by François Couture