Clearly on the accessible end of Cuneiform Records' impressive label roster, this fine album really mixes genres. It's tagged on bandcamp as "baroque cartoon music, chamber punk" and so on. No idea what that means, but it's a big fun record for me ;-)
Favorite track would have been "Albatross To Betatron" but it wasn't offered in the select box...
Favorite track: You Deflect Happiness.
Sven B. Schreiber
Oh yeah, "Krakatoa"! I just love them! Found them long ago on "Cuneiform" and even bought this album more than 10 years ago. Don't know though where it is now... somehow it got lost for unknown reasons... Good that Peter Tush purchased it right now, so I was reminded of this lost gem of chamber rock. Gotta have it my collection again!
Favorite track: Rotor Blade.
Krakatoa are a young quartet, originally from Philadelphia and now relocated to Brooklyn who blend precise musicality and compositional skill with charm, playfulness and humor; their music is the unlikely meeting place between art rock, baroque cartoon music, progressive rock and chamber punk. We Are The Rowboats is their 3rd release & their 1st on Cuneiform and we are happy to have them on board! The band uses vocals, guitars, violin, electric mandolin, keyboards, bass and drums. Guest musicians further enrich the quartet’s sound. Krakatoa utilizes rock and classical instrumentation to channel surf and subvert the musical landscape, borrowing from every imaginable musical genre. Their mixture of charming musicality and fearless humor is theirs alone.
"This band is madly eclectic, but it's to their credit they don’t overtly call attention to it?.subtlety and sly humor are prized? While never coming across as derivative, Krakatoa seems to be going for balance between pre-1974 King Crimson, Millions Now Living Will Never Die-era Tortoise and the crazy-quilt jump-cutting of John Zorn’s Naked City with touches of the instrumental Hot Rats / Waka Jawaka side of Frank Zappa . Driving, distorted electric guitar lines give way to mournful violin passages, Fractured Fairy Tales daffiness segues into pensive watching-the-sunset yearning, Oliver Nelson and Elmer Bernstein TV/movie music evolves into surrealist tangos, Charles Ives rearranges the entire Booker T & the MG's canon-- all this and more goes on before your very ears and this crafty bunch make it all seem natural and affable. Good show!"
-Mark Keresman, Waterfront Week, Brooklyn NY
released May 6, 2003
Glendon Jones - violins, guitar, mandolin, cuatro
Ted Casterline - bass, guitar, vocals, loops, baritone guitar, percussion
Val Opielski - keyboards, guitar, vocals, percussion
Ely Levin - drums, percussion