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Voices is strange music. The Texas quartet Ohm seems to aim at a territory somewhere between psychedelia and free improvisation. Actually, drummer Nathan Brown and keyboardist Doug Ferguson (no, it can't be the bassist from Camel) improvise in the space rock/psychedelic format, while clarinetist Chris Forrest and percussionist/saxophonist S. Forest Ward display extended techniques and style related to European free improv. This is an unsettling blend; space fans will most likely find it too avant-garde, while free aficionados will snob the tonal structure and keyboard chords. Still, the idea is interesting. The problem is that these musicians stretch things way too long. The pace is usually slow and the same two chords are sometimes used again and again, with very little happening over them. Even at six minutes, the short "Are You Ready?" is still three minutes too long (at least!). The second part of "In a Desert-Alambic/Clash of the Titans" features a strong jam propelled by drums and mellotron, something reminiscent of when King Crimson improvised back in the 1970s. The weirdest and most interesting track is "Voices du le Blon," which goes from an imaginative reed duet to cheesy organ lines and samples from Harry Choates & His Louisianna String Band -- believe it or not. Ohm's music needs more concision, and it is clear this group has enough musicianship to achieve better artistic statements.

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