The Unsemble - The Unsemble
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Generally favorable reviews - based on 7 Critics What's this?

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  • Summary: The debut release for the trio formed by the Jesus Lizard's Duane Denison, Einsturzende Neubaten's Alexander Hacke, and Silver Jew's Brian Kotzur includes five improvised tracks.
Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 5 out of 7
  2. Negative: 0 out of 7
  1. Mar 12, 2014
    These 15 instrumental tracks come across as half exorcism, half jam session, but the result fits pretty well in line with everything they've done in their other bands. [No. 107, p.58]
  2. Mar 5, 2014
    Sure, no one is going to mistake this for an Einsturzende Neubaten or Jesus Lizard album (and most definitely not a Silver Jews disc), but the links to those acts can still be felt in the music here, making this self-titled debut an impressive collaboration between a trio of rather impressive collaborators.
  3. Mar 5, 2014
    The improv pieces are purposefully positioned so that the Unsemble seemingly upset their own composure, like a film reel that's become stuck: it distorts slowly, then bubbles feverishly until it finally melts away.
  4. 70
    It's an arc of moods and musicianship, ranging from dynamic tension, inspired cinematic tension and moments of textured finesse. [Apr 2014, p.94]
  5. Mar 14, 2014
    It’s telling that the Unsemble grip hardest when they’re hewing closely to their inspirations--as well as the bands from which they sprang.
  6. Mar 5, 2014
    It’s a shame that this is an album slightly prone to dwelling on its ambience. Still, this is a promising collaboration which Denison, Hacke and Kotue will hopefully choose to reprise and develop.
  7. 50
    The Unsemble is an album that sounds like it was phoned in from a bunch of guys who clearly think they just have to turn up to the studio and the magic will flow instantly from the fingers of these master craftsmen.