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Insignificance by Barbez

Billed as an avant-garde, chamber-rock outfit and/or avant-garde Cabaret inflected punk unit, this New York City-based group’s manifesto features a morphing of East European folk, tribal and gutter-punk rock. They also pursue asymetrical quotients of hardcore/progressive rock, fronted by singer/dancer (and costume designer) Ksenia Vidyaykina. In addition, Pamelia Kurstin’s Theremin work fits rather snugly amid a standard rock-bass-guitar-drums foundation with Danny Tunick layering vibes and marimba lines into the mix.

Often constructed upon loud, thrashing grooves, this lot reigns as a nouveau,anti-pop band to coincide with a few softer stylizations, awash with theatrical elements. On "Insignificance," the group even manages to spark notions of the 70s, British Canterbury progressive-rock genre via Ms. Vidvaykina’s emphatic crooning and the band’s wistful melody lines. Sure, it takes a few spins to put it all into perspective, as the group’s enigmatic stylizations often bespeak an outlandishly distinct mode of attack. Other components of this ensemble’s aura are embedded within a carnival-like atmosphere via waltzes and polytonal contrasts woven into a hard-rocking mindset. They also blend the macabre, with moments of despair and jubilant proclamations while also tossing in a few knotty time signatures along the way. No doubt, it’s out of the norm, but strangely compelling! (Recommended)

Additional Info

  • Artist / Group Name: Barbez
  • CD Title: Insignificance
  • Genre: Other
  • Year Released: 2005
  • Record Label: Important
  • Rating: Four Stars
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