Wednesday, March 25, 2015

Arcane Dimension: Avantgarden

I've been wracking my brain how to do justice to both Arcane Dimension and their album Avantgarden with this post, and have decided that before I even start talking about the album, I just simply MUST tell you about the band behind it.
Arcane Dimension is comprised of Jarek Tatarek, who plays a number of instruments. Including and perhaps most importantly, the signature sound of Arcane Dimension, the GuitarViol (a bowed guitar that you have to hear to understand), and Teresa Camp, an extensively trained and amazingly talented singer and belly dancer. Yep, belly dancer. Not only does Teresa provide the haunting vocals of Arcane Dimension but she choreographs and dances during their live performances. Sadly I've not had the pleasure of seeing a live performance, but I have seen a number of videos from performances past and am blown away by the amount of artistry and in each of them. Very seldom do you find a band who's live performances not only eclipse their studio albums but provide visual stimulation beyond the typical lighting effects. Arcane Dimension does exactly that, and more.

Here is a video from Tribal Fest 14 of Arcane Dimension performing 'Music of the Spheres' from Avantgarden. The guitarviol can be heard in the background, that haunting stringed instrument you hear? yep, that's it.

See what I'm talking about? You don't see a performance like that all the time...except at their shows.

Ok, now on to the album.  From the moment you see the album art of Avantgarden you begin to suspect you are in for a treat, and you wouldn't be mistaken. Originally independently released in 2012 Avantgarden was remixed, remastered, and re-released in 2014 by Ravenheart Music and two bonus tracks were added.
This album defies words, but I'll try my best. The first track "Beyond the Horizon" starts with a hypnotic combination of zills and guitar leading into throaty vocals, which meld together and bring to mind carpeted dance tents of the middle east. While rest of the tracks vary in the images that they bring to mind and the sound they present, they each flow well into each other and maintain a "world beat" flavor with a hint of the metal and atmospheric rock of previous albums. The instrumental tracks such as "Garden of Arcane Delights" are nearly impossible to simply listen to as they seem to want you to get up and move to them (stretch first though, that doumbek beat is killer).  Aventgarden is literally a garden of Auditory Addiction, and something you should experience for yourself. So finish reading and then head over to where you can see and hear exactly what I'm talking about. I hope you enjoy your newest Auditory Addiction.

Arcane Dimension is primarily Jarek and Teresa, however their albums and performances feature a number of guest musicians such as Jared Marill and Susu Pampanin on Avantgarden, and belly dancers from the San Francisco California bay area.

Disclaimer: I received a copy of Avantgarden for review purposes but the proceeding review is entirely mine based solely upon my opinion of the album.

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