After some independent EP releases the UK based band Tonochrome found a home at the Bad Elephant Music label. Andres Razzini, The band’s singer and main songwriter explains; “When your music doesn’t quite fit into one of the neat little boxes, finding a home for it is not the simplest task ... but Bad Elephant don’t do boxes”. The music of Tonochrome has influences from jazz, pop, rock and classical music. The mixing of styles and the open mindset of the band justify a review on progVisions.
Tonochrome are also set to release a series of singles on The Animal Farm label. These songs are stand alone releases, and won’t be available on the album. The promo copy of the album was provided by Nineteen 73 Artist Promotion.
Andres Razzini - voice, guitar; Charlie Cawood - guitar; Jack Painting - drums; Steve Holmes - keyboards, programming
Alon Morgan - bass; Vera Jonas - voice; Becky Brass - Vibraphone
Clarice Rarity - violin; Sarah Hill - violin; Sophie Broadbent - viola; Axelle Bastiani - violoncello
Lucy Brown - French Horn; Emily McMillan - French Horn; Sam Calcott - trumpet; Mickey Bones - trombone
The album has 12 tracks and three of them are short Interludes to connect several songs to each other. For example the pop influenced album opener “The Ridge” has classical ending with a real string quartet and in the following track “Interlude 1” the opening tune of the first track returns and makes a perfect connection to the following track “Border Crossings”. A song with a slow opening on Fender Rhodes piano, delicate vocals and the returning string quartet. The use of a real string quartet and a horn section with French horn, trumpet and trombone makes the music remarkable. “Interlude 2” connects seamlessly to the song “Tighter”. The Fender Rhodes piano and the guitar parts gives the piece some jazzy influences but the song develops into a kind of pop song with catchy vocal refrains. These first five tracks form a whole. The music of the following song “Disputed Area” has the same relaxed atmosphere as the first part of the album. It is a nice melting pot of pop, jazz and classical influences. The delicate piano in “Interlude 3” connects the song with the next one that is entitled “Kilometre Zero”. It is a beautiful little song with delicate vocals, piano and strings. Just Like Us is a lovely melting pot of styles. It has the vocals of a pop song, the guitar and horns from the jazz scene and the string quartet from the classical world. The vibraphone in the song “Humbled and Broken” increases the musical pallet of the band even more. “The Gates” opens with an acoustic guitar and a vocal part. When the acoustic guitar connects with the strings the music gets a blissful atmosphere. This remarkable album closes with the song “Missing Piece”. The strings and in particular the violoncello gives the opening a dark and melancholic atmosphere. Slowly the intensity of the music is growing towards a climax. You can find some wonderful drum parts in this song with an abrupt ending.
With “Map in Fragments” the UK based band Tonochrome made a remarkable and superb debut album for the open minded music lover. This consistent album has a relaxed and mellow atmosphere. The instrumentation with the string quartet and the horn section gives the music the so needed diversity. After several spins in your CD player this album will reveal it’s real beauty to you. The real strings of the string quartet are an enrichment to the music. Personally I enjoyed listening to this album very much. A lovely surprise from Bad Elephant Music.
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