Since my introduction of labels like MoonJune and Cuneiform Records have peaked my interest thanks to the 2010 documentary of the first documentary of Romantic Warriors: A Progressive Music Saga, there was this amazing band that just completely blew me away. And that band was Cheer-Accident. Formed in Chicago in 1981, the band released 17 albums and their previous is their 16th called, Fear Draws Misfortune released in 2009.
This is perhaps one of the most compelling and thunderous albums I’ve listened to. You could tell that the odd and difficult time signatures are bouncing off the wall through ominous twists and turns throughout the entire album. It’s this combination between Frank Zappa, Captain Beefheart, Univers Zero, Magma, The Residents, Present, King Crimson, and Krautrock legends, Faust.
There’s a touch of the RIO (Rock in Opposition), the dystopian roars, and the Avant-Progressive Rock sounds come bursting in as if the door has been blown down through a gigantic bulldozer and Cheer-Accident coming marching in to give the surprising touches thrown in and let me say, they know what they are doing. The band consists of; Thymme Jones on Drums, Keyboards, Trumpet, and Vocals, Alex Perkolup on Bass Guitar, and Jeff Libersher on Guitar and Vocals.
And having 15 musicians playing on here along with Sleepytime Gorilla Museum’s Carla Kihlstedt on Vocals, it’s a perfect combination to come along for a roller-coaster ride that you will never forget. And with five centerpieces on the album, it can really take note that you will expect the unexpected that you might be on the look out for.
Opening track, Sun Dies, starts off with a blaring haywire guitar introduction that have an antagonistic chords that has a resemblance of the Trout Mask Replica-era. And combined with the vocalizations coming in as if the thumping beats help out before getting into the Zappa vibes of Dog Breath, In the Year of the Plague as if the Northettes from Hatfield and the North and Egg were singing those melodies to capture the dissonance rhythm that makes it out of the blue and wonderous in surreal way.
Blue Cheadle starts off in a rhythm format of the Post-Rock era of the late ‘70s/early ‘80s with a thumping guitar and bass line in 126 beats per minute as the drums capture the ominous atmosphere. Not to mention the chanting of the title track and the doomy piano melodies and synths followed by a hand-held Latin instrument of the Guiro, as it ends into a nightmarish violin duo to give chills and shivers down the listeners spine with an homage to Art Zoyd.
Disenchantment has a laid-back percussion section followed by the drums and the synths make it sound like a car driving off into the night with nowhere to go that has an electronic beat to it. And the crashing sounds followed by the minor keys in the piano and then going into a midtempo beat as the female vocals come in and trumpets and melodica come out of the blue with a crashing ending as the galloping increasing terrors that wishes that Cheer-Accident could have written a score for either a David Lynch or Tim Burton film with twisted and insanity force on The Carnal, Garish City.
With those odd time changes and their homage to Present, The Residents and Gentle Giant combined into one, it is very complex and off the wall featuring blaring horn sections, and Alex’s tribute to Roger Triguax of Present and Fred Frith as well, he takes his guitar into those darker and sinister areas and almost neo-classical moments followed by the vocalizations going into different areas. And of course, the quacking voices, shows they have an excellent sense of humor thrown in.
But it’s Your Weak Heart that is a nine-minute epic to give the band a relaxing calm after the storm. It’s Thymme taking the vocals and singing through his heart and showing Cheer-Accident’s softer side for the first two minutes before it kicks into overdrive of a symphonic structure with a jazzy section. And then it goes into the styles of a Keith Emerson concerto that is almost straight into the touches of the Trilogy-era and there is some compelling rhythm sections to give it the Prog power before ending with Thymme's vocals to close the curtain for a warmth and soothing finale.
This is my third time listening to Fear Draws Misfortune and my intro to Cheer-Accident’s music and they have released a mind-blowing yet enthralling and absorbing release of 2009 from the Cuneiform label. A must have for the RIO/Avant-Prog fans worth sinking into the deep waters for a twisted adventure of explorations diving into see what they will come up with next.