[ KEY REVIEWS | SHORT REVIEWS | DETAILED REVIEWS
Track List: 1. Fight of the Seagulls 2:45 (MAYA) 2. Race Infernale 1:56 (=) 3. Miles At the Corner 1:59 (Schefe) 4. Karavane in den tod 9:54 (Karathanassis, Schefe) 5. Ice Drops-1 1:09 (Schefe) 6. Spider Walk 1:26 (Reinfeld, Karathanassis, Schefe) 7. Dugdig 1:21(Karathanassis, Schefe) 8. Reconstruction & Wideness 6:39 (MAYA) 9. La dance de spherique 9:25 (Schefe) 10. Cool Man 2:08 (Karathanassis, Schefe) 11. Still Out 1:44 (Karathanassis) 12. What is Real 3:24 (Reinfeld, Karathanassis, Schefe) 13. Heavy Clouds 3:26 (=) 14. SLG 14:00 (=) 15. Runi 1:31 (=) 16. Monsters 1:16 (Reinfeld, Karathanassis) 17. Ice Drops-2 1:59 (Karathanassis, Schefe) 18. Konnotation vulva 5:46 (Schefe) Line-up: Athanasios Karathanassis - bass guitar Rainer Schefe - electric guitar (via guitar-synth) Jochen Reinfeld - drums Recorded & mixed by MAYA. Mastered by J. Kirchner at "Dara-Sound".
Preamble. Although the German band Maya has existed since the middle of the 1980s, "Extracts" is their official debut album. Some of the tracks here were composed in the second half of that decade. Bassist Athanasios Karathanassis is also the manager of the Red Art label. Also, he played on the Achim Von Horn album, "Nice To Meet You", which was released by Red Art as well. The review of this album can be read >here.
The Album. Remember >Jugalbandi? The saga of spontaneous Space Rock explorations continues. There is much in common between the music of Jugalbandi and that of Maya, though it's clear that each of these mature 'Space Crews' made their paths to the depths of a musical cosmos separately. Nevertheless, the impromptu Space Rock of Maya in many ways surpasses that of Jugalbandi, which, above all, is the result of the presence of bassist in the line-up of Maya. And Athanasios Karathanassis is an excellent musician, as well as both of his band mates. Rainer Schefe uses a guitar synth throughout the album, so his guitar solos sound from time to time like real passages of synthesizer. Jochen Reinfeld's drumming is always diverse and highly intensive regardless whether basic arrangements are at the moment also intensive or not, which, by the way, happens here most often. Indeed, along with the frequent use of unusual meters and a few of the other specific details, a continuous tempo contrast between different soloing parts is one of the key aspects of this album and one of the most impressive features of it as well. So, this trio is a really strong and truly adventurous 'Space Crew'. However, not all of the compositions that are presented on this all-instrumental album are about Space-Rock, though most of them were created impromptu. Musically, only all three of the first tracks on the album: Fight of the Seagulls, Race Infernale, and Miles At the Corner, represent a highly original Jazz-Fusion with elements of Space Rock where there are no any repetitions. All excellent stuff - especially the album's opener. The absence of any repetitions is typical for most compositions here, while all the further events on the album concern almost exclusively Space Rock where, though, the development of arrangements is typical for Avant-garde Academic Music rather than the said genre. All seven of the remaining short pieces that sound less than two minutes: Ice Drops-1, Spider Walk, Dugdig, Still Out, Runi, Monsters, and Ice Drops-2 (5, 6, 7, 11, 15, 16, 17), are about a real, pure Space Rock, which, nevertheless, was created impromptu. Though, as I've already mentioned above, most of the tracks on this album were created impromptu and without any repetition. However, unlike Free Universe's "File Under Extreme", which was also created on the spur of the moment, there are no such arrangements on "Extracts" that would sound like being unstructured, even though most of the musical structures are here unstable. There are only two tracks on the album, What is Real and Heavy Clouds (12 & 13), representing kind of an abstract Space Rock. Nevertheless, these pieces are by no means uninteresting. Various glissandos and flageolets, real and echoed solos of guitar, all of which are slow here, up-tempo solos of bass, and a fast, intensive, and very diverse drumming, create quite a unique cosmic (i.e. both spacey and well-ordered) chaos. All sixteen of the other tracks on this album feature positively unstable textures. Well, it's time to describe the best extracts from "Extracts", and all six of the remaining tracks here are real musical extra-acts: Reconstruction & Wideness, Konnotation vulva, Cool Man, Karavane in den tod, La dance de spherique, and SLG (tracks 8, 18, 10, 4, 9, & 14 respectively). Perhaps with the exception of the first of these compositions (8), all of them were partly composed. The first two of the said pieces are about a blend of Space Rock and the guitar-based Art-Rock. The stylistics of Cool Man, where the guitar often sounds like a real synthesizer, can be defined the same way, though the phrase "the guitar-based" should be here replaced with the word "Symphonic". All three of the longest pieces on the album, the 10-minute Karavane in den tod and La dance de spherique, and especially the 14-minute SLG, are, nevertheless, the absolute winners. All of them contain a few repetitions, as all the basic arrangements (and these are the parts of a bass guitar) were composed from the With these three pearls of Spacey Psychedelic Rock, the guys displayed all the emotional (and not only, of course) aspects of spontaneous explorations of the depth of new musical dimensions of Space.
Summary. Now, you know my attitude towards "Extracts" from a long Space Rock journey by the crew of the Maya 'starship'. Also, you know who you are, and what is that you're into. This album sounds like the sci-fi Space Rock novel. Welcome! Jump there through a link below:
VM: November 6, 2002
"Red Art Records":
[ KEY REVIEWS | SHORT REVIEWS | DETAILED REVIEWS - LIST | BANDLISTS ]