KFJC 89.7FM
Album Review

Make a Circus – “Beijing Olympics” – [Prom Night]

Thurston Hunger   3/10/2013   CD, Jazz


2011 release on Prom Night featuring label co-founder
Owen Stewart-Robertson with some fine guitar gestations.
Check out the lead-off track, how it hovers and crackles!
That sets a great tone of anticipation for this album.
The other tracks are less fistful, and more wistful but
stil pretty tasty. He’s joined throughout by Adam Kinner
on reeds and Liam O’Neill on skins. Dig how they go from
the bursty beginnings of #6 to wind up doing a simultaneous
soft-shoe finish on that piece. The closer offers a more
delay-wash approach for Owen and Adam, climbing over each
other note by note with a cloud sampled beneath them.
Calisthenics air out the room on #3, counting out like
some math wizard, but with cooldown phases of ranch guitar
and a sax breeze. #5 features Owen laying down riff and
twang while Liam keeps gentle time and Adam then solos
grazing skronk, but keeping it pretty mellifluous. Part
of the success of these Prom Night debutantes is the mix
of rock and jazz where neither caves in to the other side
too much, so these pieces fit fine in your set next to
The Ex, Smog, Tortoise and stuff on Born Bad, while giving
you a chance to summon Actuel and ESP powers.

-Thurston Hunger

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