Band: Cheer Accident
CD Title: Putting off Death
Label: Cuneiform Records (2017)
Rating: Satisfying 3/5
This is album number eighteen for Cheer Accident, their third appearing on the Cuneiform label and as on previous outings the bandís musical style is unpredictable and at times challenging all of which makes for some great Avant-Prog. This is music that comes from the Rock-In-Opposition school of Henry Cow and the Art Bears that is also influenced by the Progressive Rock of Genesis and King Crimson. Songs, some long at eleven minutes and others as short at three, often never stay in the same place for very long. Instead dramatic shifts in structure and approach are the order of the day sometimes going from pleasingly melodic to dis-jointed angularity and sometimes the reverse. Sometimes minor arpeggios are repeated to build or heighten expectation and then layered with short haunting stabs of music to generate a visceral sense of anxiety. Instruments making odd sounds are spotlighted in solo fashion creating introductions or interludes in odd time signatures all with the intention of creating a musical feel. But whatever happens musically you get the sense that the band labored lovingly to create these haunting sounds for the purpose of making us pay attention. Like so much music like this, it is not for playing as background and certainly not for the faint of heart. It can be warm and pleasing one moment and then shockingly discordant the next, sparse and Chamber-Rock like one moment and sonically dense the next. Fact is, you donít last this long making music that is at best niche oriented without being good at it and itís clear that Cheer Accident are more than good at it, their live it, itís what they do. They like to break rules and colour outside the lines. This is music that comes from the deepest parts and theyíre obviously passionate about the ability to create it. Fans of the various Avant-Prog styles and approaches will find much to appreciate and enjoy with this release.