I'm going to guess Lisa Kaser, who's credited with the CD's design, is also the painter/cartoonist contributing the way cool and vaguely Maurice Sendaky illustrations to 3 Leg Torso's quite progressive Animals & Cannibals. Frankly, though, I don't even want to guess what's in the bone-strewn cauldron on the liner's interior, having a feeling there's a bit more of the animal urge to the light atmosphere than is at first indicated. Leave it to artists and their strange senses of humor.
3 Leg Torso's Animals is likewise unexpected, a fine-art blend of chamber, Euro, Amero, cool jazz, and classical lite heavily sauced in rustic airs and ambiances. A bit of tango pops its Addams Family head up now and again, and some of the cuts have the feel and tempo of movements considering their own power in rapidly morphing context, ruminating upon choices and avenues as the CD's course runs through itself, sometimes brisk, prancing with mad eccentric elegance, other times contemplative but never less than masterful. The Life and Times of the Good Deeds of St. Penguin sounds as though penned by Eleni Karaindrou…were that composer to experience a surprising fit of non-melancholic happiness.
Then there's Csardas with it's Beautiful Dreamer riff extended into an extrapolation of complexity. Hell, there's even oom-pah-pah in various phases, and Frailach #1 keeps transmuting within a speedy atmospheric Balkan milieu letting down into an almost Gary Brooker-ine (Procol Harum) Autumn, moody but invested with that last-gasp-before-winter feeling all forms of life know only too well. The song is not all that distant from the sort of tune Erling Wold might have crafted for his soundtrack to the film The Bed You Sleep In. Animals & Cannibals, then, is a beast of shifting colors, a fairyland gatherum of tableaus breathing with wonder but also bone and gristle, a collection of proofs that intelligence, despite all odds, yet thrives in the music realm.
Edited by: David N. Pyles
Copyright 2010, Peterborough Folk Music Society.
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