Vibracathedral Orchestra: Versatile Arab Chord Chart CD


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Versatile Arab Chord Chart is the second full-length outing by the quintet of Neil Campbell, Michael Flower, Julian Bradley, Bridget Hayden and Adam Davenport. Like their UK cousins and fellow VHF recording artists Sunroof!, Vibracathedral Orchestra usually works from a base of modal improvisation. Led by Campbell’s sawing violin, tracks like “Wearing Quid Frock” and the epic “Japan Banjo” build up arcs of lingering overtones beneath an undercurrent of melody. They cut the drones in their life with extremely effective bursts of near rock, in a style reminiscent of the pre-Nico Velvet Underground (circa 1966 or so). The band’s combination of clattering percussion, droning strings, and considerable sense of where to put the “groove” on tracks like “Catching Loners With Blank Arms” makes them unique among their peers. Versatile Arab Chord Chart follows the band’s previous Lino Hi outing on Giardia and a series of intriguing and extremely limited self-released titles.