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Sunday 18 July 2010

 MODEST MIDGET: The Great Prophecy of a Small Man

Release: 2010
Style: progressive pop-rock/light prog
Label: Multi-Polar music
Playing Time: 47:13
Cat. N°: 00000
Review by: Misha
Rating: 8,5/10


This is one of the best prog rock debuts in years. Modest Midget makes a little light, let’s say, poppy prog, fusing different music styles from all over the world and time. In one song you can find rock, jazz, Klezmer and classic references together, arranged with an ingenious ease to a complete and joyful whole. A modernised and diversified Gentle Giant will be a nice reference point, but then a GG that also has a lot of air-play potential. MM keeps all compositions on a quite accessible level. Their music is balancing between prog and pop. By the way, talking about Gentle Giant, wasn’t it the inspiration for the band’s name?

Well, the most important is, that all the songs on the cd are most skilfully composed. The tunes are beautiful and catchy, and some are even danceable. In this, I definitely don’t agree with the MM’s claim that one can not dance on their music. I just do it, while shaving in the morning! Yeah, it is a morning music, optimistic, playful and energising. There is even a certain amount of humour in it, especially in all this style changes and composition tricks.

Amsterdam (Holland) based Modest Midget is centred around the composer, singer and multi-instrumentalist Lionel Ziblat, who also wrote all the songs on the album. Actually, the group started to exist as such only after recording of the album was finished. The recording itself was mostly managed by Lionel himself, who invited various musicians to contribute on the disk. The concept of a real rock band and playing live music crystallized eventually, involving 3 other musicians: Richard Zoer(Bass guitar & vocals), Artis Orubs (Drums) and Tristan Hupe (Keyboards), who didn’t play on the disk. I wonder, how will it all sound on stage. I will definitely attend to any gig they are going be playing soon.

Here is some more bio information on Lionel Ziblat. Born in Buenos Aires in 1972, Lionel emigrated to Israel, where he worked as guitarist and composer with various musicians and theatre productions. He then moved to the Netherlands, where he graduated in classical composition, having also specialized in Jazz guitar and orchestral conducting. He composes for different ensembles and vocal groups and is also active as a guitarist, arranger and producer.

The album gets almost 9 of 10 from me, and it is a really high appreciation, for the originality, fun and enthusiasm of the first Modest Midget offering, “The Great Prophecy Of A Small Man”. Let us hear more of those prophecies, please!

1. Follow The Noise (0:55)
2. Contemporary Ache (5:17)
3. Troubles In Heaven (3:13)
4. Coffee From Yesterday (2:40)
5. Back From My Trip (3:34)
6. Home Seek (4:26)
7. Here I Go (3:22)
8. Baby (3:05)
9. Jorge Knows How Difficult A Musician’s Life Can Be, But Then Again, Who Doesn’t (4:00)
10. Buy Me! (2:13)
11. Evolution (3:18)
12. I Came, I Saw, I Left (5:29)
13. The Last Straw (5:13)

Lionel Ziblat - guitars, bass guitars, keyboards, percussion, vocals
Emiel de Jong - saxophones, clarinet and vocals
Bas Wiegers - violin & vocal
Vera vd Bie - violin & viola
Ilse Eijsink – clarinets
Oene van Geel - viola

danny on Sunday 18 July 2010 - 17:38:12

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