Album Review

Madeira, The – “Carpe Noctem” – [Double Crown Records]

Thurston Hunger   1/23/2011   A Library, CD

Great glassy instrumentals, a surf of sand polished up with plenty of
room for reflection in the reverb and the beauty of the melodies. Ivan
Pongracic (formerly of the Space Cossacks) is the lead guitarist, he
just has fine chops, tantalizing timing on sustained notes, and a fondness
for deep baritone work. But his melodic sense is what makes this album
really crest above a lot of other furious talents that lack his verve.
And Pongracic’s sonic sources for inspiration appear as varied as his
technique, as I suspect “Hamsa” is a trip of the hat to Hamza el Din,
and they give some “Reidar” love to Scandinavian surf on “El Flaco”
which has some of that stellar baritone over a western gallop. Second
guitarist Patrick O’Connor contributes some of the more driving
compositions to this release, the Madeira’s third (from 2008). Also
check the cover of the Atlantics’ “SOS” with rumble-bump section in
the middle and then these high pings bopping in and out. A lot of
originality, style and detail on display. Great any time, noctem or diem.

-Thurston Hunger

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