Review of Life Is a Gongshow by The Jazz Music Blog
Songs of Tales is where the strange meets the beautiful, where simple songs are juxtaposed with sonic outlandishness, rhythmic complexity, and the excitement of uncertainty that makes you think and rethink what you’re hearing.
Their debut album, Life Is A Gong Show, is an extraordinary collaboration from four authentic and like-minded artists from across Canada. It is a collection of songs, visual and visceral stories, all told through instrumental music. Inspired by everything from Charles Mingus to Ornette Coleman to film music, this avante-jazz-pop inspired sound begins with the unique instrumentation of sax, violin, guitar and drums. On the album this expands to Petr Cancura on saxophones & electronics; Gord Grdina on guitar, oud and bass; Jesse Zubot on violin, electronics, bass and keyboards, and Jean Martin on drums and electronics.
Recorded at the legendary Afterlife Studios in Vancouver, Canada, Songs of Tales is true collaborative music making at its best. Individually these artists have spent years finding their own paths. What makes this project special is that with full trust, everyone embraced the unknown, allowing for this uninhibited album to take shape.
You are invited on a sonic adventure… a snapshot of raw music making.
Marty's review: "Life Is A Gong Show" is what I would call a collection of undulating music-scapes that have been created by a very unique and talented collaborative of exceptional musicians. The compositions allow the full breadth of each individual's instrument to weave and connect together in a sculptural way that encompasses several styles and genres of the musical spectrum. The key element here is fluidity, and this is achieved by Songs of Tales' unique sense of eclecticism that embodies the essence of the sounds produced.