MJR028 Manifest Density
No production credits
Released on September 22, 2009
no chart information
Find it at GEMM
MJR028 cover
[high resolution scan]

K ronomyth 1.0: CANTERBURY VAN BEETHOVEN. How is said “The moon lobs sobs of laughter at the sea” in Sanskrit and, saying that, does it change the way you see the moon? Or, put another way, if I string a bunch of nonsensical words together, are you really going to waste your time trying to figure them out? Really, you would?! Then you, my friend, should consider a career in music criticism. Of course, said career comes with unsettling truths such as: 1) there are more talented people making great music than people willing to pay for great music, 2) there is no shortage of people willing to whore out the better adjectives in the English language to tell you just how much great music there is in the world that you (and not they) should pay to hear. Which brings us to Moraine. The Seattle-based band, here in a five-piece configuration with violin and cello, released an album of instrumental music in 2009 that for the life of me sounds like those early Camper Van Beethoven instrumentals played with jazz fusion sensibilities. Since that’s not likely to make you cough up fourteen dollars, I’ll tell you that the closing “Middlebrau” is brilliant, well worth a dollar if you’re into the Canterbury scene. The songs, a good half of them written by guitarist Dennis Rea, follow a fairly conventional rock structure some of the time, which makes the music more accessible than it might have otherwise been. Instrumental works, especially those where the F word (fusion) is a factor, always benefit from a good hook in my book. Manifest Density has a few of them: “Middlebrau,” “Uncle Tang’s Cabinet of Dr. Caligari,” “Kuru.” The noisiness and pretentious art weeniosity is kept to a minimum, raising its head mostly on “Revenge Grandmother.” Given the unconventional lineup and Moonjune’s predilection for the fringes of music, I was thinking migraine from the outset, but Manifest Destiny is an enjoyable middle point between CVB and Canterbury.


  1. SAVE THE YUPPIE BREEDING GROUNDS    (Ruth Davidson)    4:12
  2. EPHEBUS AMOEBUS    (Kevin Millard)    4:55
  3. NACHO SUNSET    (Dennis Rea)    4:29
  4. $9 PAY-PER-VIEW LIFETIME TV MOVIE    (Ruth Davidson)    5:51
  5. MANIFEST DENSITY    (Dennis Rea)    3:55
  6. UNCLE TANG'S CABINET OF DR. CALIGARI    (Dennis Rea)    4:01
  7. DISILLUSIONED AVATAR    (Alicia Allen)    5:15
  8. KURU    (Dennis Rea)    5:02
  9. REVENGE GRANDMOTHER    (Ruth Davidson)    5:11
  10. STAGGERIN'    (Dennis Rea)    4:41
  11. MIDDLEBRÄU    (Dennis Rea/Bill Horist)    6:46


ALICIA ALLEN -- violin
JAY JASKOT -- drums
KEVIN MILLARD -- bass, baliset
DENNIS REA -- guitar
Brandon Fitzsimons -- engineer, mixing
iLublovovitch -- graphics

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US September 22, 2009 Moonjune CD MJR028  


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