Monday, September 9, 2013

The Intersection: Caravaggio

The Intersection: An ongoing feature on JazzWrap that looks at artists that have blended jazz, world and electronica in new and highly creative ways.

Caravaggio (group)Bruno Chevillon (bass, electronics)
Benjamin de la Fuente (violin, mandocaster, guitar, electronics)
Eric Echampard (drums, percussion, electronics)
Samuel Sighicelli (hammond organ, keyboards)

Brimming with influences of King Crimson, Can and fusion era Miles Davis, French quartet Caravaggio are deserving of wider recognition. Blending found sounds, electronics, steady basslines with crashing and cascading guitars and drums, Caravaggio create rock music with experimental jazz tendencies. It's reminiscent of Norwegian groups Elephant9 or Humcrush.

On their 2008 self-titled debut, Caravaggio opens like a submarine rising to the surface with "Canicule." Blips and crackles maintain the pace throughout the fast half of the album until the heavy laden "Platz." It feels like Miles Davis meeting up with Korn. Dark, dense and filled with enough slow energy you are bound to be happily depressed by the closing cacophony of Echampard's drums and the screeching guitar lines.

Caravaggio#2 moves in a slightly more song structured direction. With a similar and just as sinister version of Denis Hopper's "Platz" (a reworking of "Platz" from the debut), Caravaggio shows a great deal of growth in the four years between albums. "When Will You Be Angelic" and "Anybody Here" come on fast and furious with whizzing guitars and keyboards followed by drum patterns. "Anybody Here" transitions into a funkadelic style groove towards the latter moments which in continual listens seems like pure genius. "Profondo" closes the album with King Crimson like quality - slow moving but monstrous in structure.

While prog, experimental fusion can be envisioned throughout Caravaggio's material - the quartet are focused on providing something different with their album. A sense of adventure and intensity that shows that its not just the Scandinavian territories that explore in new atmospherics. Here's to hoping this quartet is around for a while.

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