Entente Cordiale - the recognition of common interests
Rochester free-rockers Entente Cordiale return with their first "real" CD after a couple of CD-R releases that were well received over here at Crucial Blast HQ. Exploring themes of alliance and collaboration, Entente Cordiale (named after a historical agreement created between the English and the French at the dawn of the 20th century) craft a nearly 50-minute jam that while broken up into seperate tracks, seems to flow together as one huge organic piece. At first, this feels like the quieter side of members Joe Tunis and Chris Reeg, whose other band Crush The Junta just came out with a hefty new CD-R of improvised free-rock sludge that buried me beneath a heavy blanket of distorted goop. Here they are joined by Will Veeder (also of Hinkley, Torpedoes, and Muler), and the first track, "An UNderstanding Is Met", is a fragile, drifting tangle of folky guitar strum and clanging pipe chimes, almost like the Dead C lazily playing on the backporch of some country farm, idyllic and folky and dreamy. But when the second track "Roots" emerges, the guitars take on a darker hue, the strings suddenly detuning and coiling up like serpents, scraping fretboard growls sliding across the neck of the guitars, fluttering heavy synthesizer electronics buzzing ominously beneath Entente Cordiale's deformed blues licks and buzzing amplifiers. The following tracks continue in a similiar vein, sparse guitar lines repeated ad infinitum over buzzing synths and droning melodica, distorted mangled riffage clawing it's way through clouds of thick feedback, quietly pretty passages of amp hum and simple strummed chords, occasionally dipping into pools of Earth-y guitar rumble and raucous skree. It's the last five minutes of the album, however, on the last track "How Long Can It Hold", where the band cuts loose and whips up a scorching tempest of noisy guitar racket and reverberating speaker float. While not as "heavy" as their previous CD-Rs, The Recognition Of Common Interests still occupies that hazy realm between Iversen/Bjerga's trippy guitar-based improv, The Dead C at their most formless, and occasionally, the deep rumble of Earth's 2. Simple but effective packaging in a heavy mylar sleeve that holds the disc in a professionally printed card sleeve.