CHROMB – II (2014)

Did you know that the longest place name in the world comes from New Zealand? The serene ‘Taumata­whakatangihanga­koauau­o­tamatea­turi­pukakapiki­maunga­horo­nuku­pokai­whenua­kitanatahu‘ is a hill south of Hawke’s Bay in the North Island, and translates from Maori as “the summit where Tamatea, the man with the big knees, the climber of mountains, the land-swallower who travelled about, played his nose flute to his loved one”. Over the course of this Release-o-meter write-up I will attempt to show you why this place name is the reason why we have reviewed Chromb‘s sophomore album II about 5 months late.

Jazz is the most exciting yet exasperating of all music genres, and the more rambunctious and ‘acidic’ it becomes the more my brain sweats from self-satisfied overwork. Jazz revels in forcing disparate keys together, and relentlessly spitting out unabridged passages. It’s like God vomiting out a sherbet-tasting rainbow-coloured sludge. You know how many hours it takes a computer to process a multi-layered audio file versus a simple single layered audio file? That’s my brain listening to jazz, it needs time. But let’s not disregard that it remains a happy organ.

So this is II. As the opener ‘Monsieur Costume’ flows from the post-classical opening to its frenzied staccato post-jazz, I can’t help but be simply overwhelmed. As ‘La Saulce’ fools me into safety with seemingly innocuous pipe organ passages only to explode to corrosive jazz-cum-noise rock, my psyche feels enlightened yet violated. Even the minimalist punk sensibilities of “À Fond De Chien”, the closer, are hijacked by piercing saxophones and wandering piano keys and a whole lot of complexly structured hyperactivity. II‘s abrupt ending only further solidifies how far you’ve come.

Look, I apologise. Chromb‘s sophomore album II was released back in April, so we’re delivering its prowess to you a little later than expected. I apologise. It’s just taken me so long to work it out. It’s like looking at a word such as, oh I don’t know, ‘Taumata­whakatangihanga­koauau­o­tamatea­turi­pukakapiki­maunga­horo­nuku­pokai­whenua­kitanatahu‘ and not being both overtly astonished and a little dumbfounded. It’s seeing little coherent pieces within the overall form, ‘piki’ and ‘mata’, but then realising that putting those little pieces in line with the overall context is going to take some time.

You will have fun.

File Under

Jazz, progressive rock, fusion, instrumental, experimental, wacky, noise rock

Sounds A Tad Like

Jaga Jazzist, Mouse On The Keys, Now Vs Now, Kneebody, Dumb Waiter


€5EUR (Bandcamp)