Page 1 of 2 12 LastLast
Results 1 to 25 of 27

Thread: The Devil's Staircase - prog inspired by math and science (Sonus Umbra, Might Could)

  1. #1

    The Devil's Staircase - prog inspired by math and science (Sonus Umbra, Might Could)

    Coming 1st May, one track streaming now:

    https://roth-handle.bandcamp.com/alb...vils-staircase

    The band includes members of Sonus Umbra and Might Could, as well as the awe-inspiring Mattias Olsen hitting things and mangling the Mellotron - this is a Roth-Händle Studios joint.

    It's not math-rock in the conventional sense. From what I can gather, it's actually got a lot more math in it than that! More importantly, to these ears it sounds great.

    The band is:

    Aaron Geller (Electric Guitar),
    Ramsés Luna (Saxophone, Wind Midi),
    Tim McCaskey (Acoustic Guitar),
    Luis Nasser (Bass Guitar),
    Mattias Olsson (Drums, Percussion, Mellotron)
    Edgar Arrellín (Mix and Sound Design)

    Here's an erudite blog on the math behind the music:

    https://thedevilsstaircaseband.blogspot.com

    Most of it well above my head...
    “your ognna pay pay with my wrath of ballbat”

    Bandcamp Profile

  2. #2
    Member thedunno's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2012
    Location
    Netherlands
    Posts
    1,073
    Love the free track. I'm in!

  3. #3
    Member
    Join Date
    Nov 2012
    Location
    Portland, OR, USA
    Posts
    1,543
    Cool stuff. I've used math to structure music, but much simpler math.

  4. #4
    Member
    Join Date
    Nov 2012
    Location
    AZ (via Chicago)
    Posts
    71
    I will be getting this for sure , I heard the track they put on Bandcamp already , excellent!

    I am a fan of Sonus Umbra , love all of their albums including the early ones , Luis always puts a great band together.

  5. #5
    Member thedunno's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2012
    Location
    Netherlands
    Posts
    1,073
    This is good...

  6. #6
    Yeah, it is very good.

    My only beef is the Holst passage included in the first track, which I find a bit cringe-worthy to be honest.
    “your ognna pay pay with my wrath of ballbat”

    Bandcamp Profile

  7. #7
    Member gearHed289's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2012
    Location
    Chicago
    Posts
    441
    I had this on pre-order and got the full album on Friday. Really enjoyed the first listen. It's a good listen whether or not you care about the "math" part.

  8. #8
    Member Jerjo's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2012
    Location
    small town in ND
    Posts
    4,250
    Luis has posted a few times on Facebook about the making of this project. Sounds fun on the first listen; looking forward to hearing the rest.
    I don't like country music, but I don't mean to denigrate those who do. And for the people who like country music, denigrate means 'put down.'- Bob Newhart

  9. #9
    Member
    Join Date
    Nov 2012
    Location
    Portland, OR, USA
    Posts
    1,543
    This is a good album. It won't set the small world of prog on fire, but it's solid, well written, well-played, and has an interesting mix of timbres.

    Quote Originally Posted by Mascodagama View Post
    My only beef is the Holst passage included in the first track, which I find a bit cringe-worthy to be honest.
    I enjoyed it - it seemed to fit into the context they played it in, and I heard it as a tip of the hat to early prog, which often included just that sort of classical borrowing.

  10. #10
    Quote Originally Posted by Baribrotzer View Post
    I enjoyed it - it seemed to fit into the context they played it in, and I heard it as a tip of the hat to early prog, which often included just that sort of classical borrowing.
    It was already cheesy when Fripp did it in 1970...but maybe I will relax about it with further listens...

    EDIT: The only one of those early classical borrowings that I really unreservedly enjoy is Buon Vecchio Charlie's absolutely manic take on The Hall of the Mountain King. This is how I like to see it done - not too much respect paid, just make the thing rock 'til it's ready to blow apart!
    Last edited by Mascodagama; 3 Weeks Ago at 07:56 AM.
    “your ognna pay pay with my wrath of ballbat”

    Bandcamp Profile

  11. #11
    Member
    Join Date
    Nov 2012
    Location
    Toronto, Canada
    Posts
    693
    Quote Originally Posted by Mascodagama View Post
    It was already cheesy when Fripp did it in 1970...but maybe I will relax about it with further listens...
    I highly doubt that it was seen as cheesy in 1970. That is hindsight talking, in my opinion.

    neil

  12. #12
    Highly Evolved Orangutan JKL2000's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2003
    Location
    Westchester, NY
    Posts
    9,875
    I forgot Ramses Luna was in this.

    It's in my Bandcamp collection now, so I'd better listen to it tonight. That and Jacob's new Opium Cartel album

  13. #13
    Member
    Join Date
    Nov 2012
    Location
    Iowa City IA
    Posts
    1,477
    The math involved in making the music is interesting to me, but its funny, I saw the band at Progtoberfest in 2018 and they were a head-banging good time. Nothing more/nothing less. I didn't "hear" anything more sophisticated going on than for example the 5/4 of Lark's Tongues Pt. II. Not that I find myself counting time signatures or bars of melodic motifs during shows I'm enjoying... So I'm sure it was there but I wasn't paying it any mind.

  14. #14
    It's very good. I love the production and the overall sound, raw and energetic. Are the members from various countries or is it a Swedish project (I want to add this to Gnosis)?

  15. #15
    Member moecurlythanu's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2012
    Location
    The Planet Lovetron
    Posts
    6,991
    ^ Various.

  16. #16
    I still can't tell if the correct version is The Devil's Staircase - as on the cover - or The Devils Staircase as on the bandcamp page. Any clues anyone?

  17. #17
    This is not the first time the Cantor function has been used as a source for a piece of music.

    Classical composer, Gyorgy Ligeti (1923-2006), between 1985 and 2001, wrote 18 piano etudes, the 13th one, L'escalier du diable (The Devil's Staircase) was also based on this math. In general, Ligeti's 18 etudes are considered among the most difficult (called terrifying by some pianists) in the repertoire. Other of the 18 etudes are based on math, also. The 1st and the 17th, I believe.

    Here's Greg Anderson having his go at the 13th, although he did 'cheat' a bit, by using edits from multiple takes.

    And if there were a god, I think it very unlikely that he would have such an uneasy vanity as to be offended by those who doubt His existence - Russell

  18. #18
    Member gearHed289's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2012
    Location
    Chicago
    Posts
    441
    Had my second listen yesterday and I really like this album. The songs, the playing, and the production are all impressive to me. Absolutely no buyer's remorse with this one.

  19. #19
    Quote Originally Posted by simon moon View Post
    This is not the first time the Cantor function has been used as a source for a piece of music.

    Classical composer, Gyorgy Ligeti (1923-2006), between 1985 and 2001, wrote 18 piano etudes, the 13th one, L'escalier du diable (The Devil's Staircase) was also based on this math. In general, Ligeti's 18 etudes are considered among the most difficult (called terrifying by some pianists) in the repertoire. Other of the 18 etudes are based on math, also. The 1st and the 17th, I believe.

    Here's Greg Anderson having his go at the 13th, although he did 'cheat' a bit, by using edits from multiple takes.

    That was fascinating; thanks. Formidable pianism!

    I know regrettably little about Ligeti, but clearly should investigate further.
    “your ognna pay pay with my wrath of ballbat”

    Bandcamp Profile

  20. #20
    Highly Evolved Orangutan JKL2000's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2003
    Location
    Westchester, NY
    Posts
    9,875
    This album is excellent! It’s sure to be on my top 10 of the year. Extremely accessible yet still in the avant- zone.

    I just can’t remember if I ordered a cd or just the download...

  21. #21
    Highly Evolved Orangutan JKL2000's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2003
    Location
    Westchester, NY
    Posts
    9,875
    Oh, Luis’ bass sounds nice and fat, and there’s lots of nice guitar runs and stuff. Cool!!

  22. #22
    Quote Originally Posted by JKL2000 View Post
    I forgot Ramses Luna was in this.
    Was that intended to be an anagram? You have two A's and no I... (sorry, I'm a tournament level Scrabbler and am always anagramming stuff)

    In other news, the sample tune sounds pretty good....
    "Moustache stays right where it's at" - Clutch

  23. #23
    Member
    Join Date
    Nov 2012
    Location
    Iowa City IA
    Posts
    1,477
    Quote Originally Posted by Zappathustra View Post
    I still can't tell if the correct version is The Devil's Staircase - as on the cover - or The Devils Staircase as on the bandcamp page. Any clues anyone?
    Regardless... I think these guys would be quite a hit at Morsefest.

  24. #24
    Member
    Join Date
    Nov 2012
    Location
    Toronto, Canada
    Posts
    693
    Quote Originally Posted by Zappathustra View Post
    I still can't tell if the correct version is The Devil's Staircase - as on the cover - or The Devils Staircase as on the bandcamp page. Any clues anyone?
    You might be looking at an earlier version of the page. The latest has the The Devil's Staircase, also.

    https://thedevilsstaircase.bandcamp.com/releases

    neil

  25. #25
    NEARfest Officer Emeritus Nearfest2's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2012
    Location
    Pennsylvania
    Posts
    1,728
    This a solid album. I bought the CD from Tim earlier this week.
    Chad

Bookmarks

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •