MW / Home / Reviews / BENT KNEE: Say So
BAND/AUTHOR:

BENT KNEE

(UNITED STATES)

TITLE:
SAY SO
RELEASE DATE:
2016
LABEL:
CUNEIFORM
GENRE:
PROGRESSIVE ROCK / -
"By releasing a progressive and avant-garde pop "Say So", Bent Knee's Americans are making their mark on the 2016 progressive year and asserting themselves as a band to be followed very closely."
NUNO777 - 20.04.2017 -
The most prestigious music school in the world, the one that trains the modern musical elite, mainly jazz, is the Berklee College Of Music in Boston. In 2009, three students from this institution, which has seen Steve Vai, musicians from Dream Theater, Gary Burton, Al Di Meola, Vinnie Colaiuta and Zoe Zawinul emerge, decided to form the group Bent Knee, which will release its first eponymous demo in 2011. The initial nucleus formed around Courtney Swain (vocals), Ben Levin (guitar) and Vince Welch (production and sound engineer) was reinforced by three other musicians (not to mention more than twenty other brass, string and choral talents who participated in the album) when "Shiny Eyed Babies" was released in 2014, Bent Knee's true first album and testimony to the great creative originality of this unique group. 

The musicians of Bent Knee like to work on interfaces and push the boundaries of genres by daring the most fertile associations. Their favourite styles: jazz, rock and pop that they mix to satisfy their idea of their art, which is above all a question of emotions. To generate them, the Americans play on the contrasts naturally caused by the presence of antagonistic elements. This is particularly audible in the first moments of the album with the very dreamlike and ceremonial "Black Tar Water" jostled by the hammering of percussion, the accessible and pop "Leak Water" disturbed by rhythmic and harmonic distortions, and "Counselor" who sees an atmosphere under tension and strident coexisting with the spirit of a neo-punk energy in the Cardiacs style. 

After a very melodious start to the art-rock album, Bent Knee shows its most avant-garde and experimental facet with the destructured and chaotic "Eve" with its free-jazz and atmospheric accents. In the second part of "Say So", each track is a new adventure that provides different sensations and surprises the listener with passages of pure sweetness in which the choirs are highlighted ('The Things You Love'), emotional ascents that remind us of the breathtaking "In God We Trust" ('Hands Up' and 'Nakami' built on jazz and Asian tones) and unbridled pop-rock models in the vein of the genius Everything Everything ('Hands Up' and 'Commercial'). 

Bent Knee is a true collective of young musicians of very high technical quality but above all with impressive harmonic gifts. If talking about individuality is a misinterpretation when approaching this band, it is impossible not to mention the atypical role of Vince Welch, sound designer and producer, particularly important in the rendering of atmospheres, arrangements and textures, and especially Courtney Swain, the charismatic singer-clavierist who bewitches every second of "Say So". Her voice, perhaps one of the most beautiful of progressive rock today in this crossover between Amanda Palmer, Moorea Dickason and Kate Bush, as comforting and moving as it is dazzling, guides the listener through the experience of immersion in "Say So". 

"Say So" is a real breath of fresh air in modern progressive rock. Easily accessible, by virtue of the pop dimension of his writing, Bent Knee's music is fascinating for the density of his arrangements and the richness of his details, which are difficult to decode and promise a listening pleasure that is always renewed. This second album confirms the qualities heard two years earlier in "Shiny Eyed Babies" and establishes the Americans as the rising star of modern progressive rock.

More informations on http://www.bentkneemusic.com/

VIDEO

SIMILAR BANDS

KING CRIMSON, CARDIACS, MOETAR, RADIOHEAD, KATE BUSH, KNIFEWORLD

TRACK LISTING

01. Black Tar Water
02. Leak Water
03. Counselor
04. Eve
05. Transition
06. The Things You Love
07. Nakami
08. Commercial
09. Hands Up
10. Good Girl


LINEUP

Ben Levin: Guitares
Chris Baum: Violon
Courtney Swain: Chant / Claviers
Gavin Wallace-ailsworth: Batterie
Jessica Kion: Basse
Vince Welch: Claviers
Andy Bergman: Invité / Saxophone, Clarinette
Ben Swartz: Invité / Violoncelle
Bryan Murphy: Invité / Trompette
Geni Skendo: Invité / Flute, Shakuhachi
Geoff Nielsen: Invité / Trombone
Keith Dickerhofe: Invité / Violoncelle
Nathan Cohen: Invité / Violon
Rebecca Hallowell: Invité / Violon
Sam Morrison: Invité / Saxophone


TAGS:
Easy Listening / FM, Cutting Edge, ?, Discordant, Experimental, Female voice, Chorus
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NUNO777 - 20/04/2017 11:18:23
La coïncidence veut que cette chronique soit publiée alors que le groupe annonce la sortie de son nouvel album "Land Animal" le 23 juin prochain sur le fameux label InsideOutMusic. Vivement juin !
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BENT KNEE: Hold Me In
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