Miriodor – Avanti!

Miriodor – Avanti!

Miriodor – Avanti!

When discussing a band that’s made music for well over thirty years, a certain caution is directed. Musically, Miriodor have followed the path of never straying from their bread and butter: a culmination of the avant-progressive and rock/jazz fusion. Surrounding themselves around ideas that encompass their artistic vision, there is little denying the fact that this is sophisticatedly strange music.

A task that’s simply stated, the Canadian quartet’s stylings have grown abundantly wealthy throughout their many years as a band. One passing look at the back cover of Avanti! reveals lengths that range between six to ten-plus minute pieces and atypical choice that it is, it permits the band to further delve into their craft; sounds like a great idea after 30 years of successful music. Miriodor’s ever-changing music has firmly revolved around one focus: weirdly accessible, yet increasingly quirky arrangements. And they’ve taken to the idea of recording a deep and weighty album—one that is filled with music that pushes all previous boundaries to the max.

The first aspect of the music that stands out is not so much the length of the tracks but the flow and seamless work the compositions possess. Even the album’s longest song, “À Déterminer” [to Be Determined,] grooves and shakes through a relentless sense of pace. Through all of its shift-shaping organics and peculiar flashes, the constant lies in the piano and its melody. Switching off from percussion ensemble, to spectral synths, back to a variation of the piano line, it ultimately conjures up an ending riddled with funk.

With that said, there’s a lot going on and it can make for some confusing ears but the craftsmen’s uncanny ability to fill each moment with vivid play and torrid energy is a key factor in it all. The sheer bubble and boil of “Envoûtement” [Bewitchment] makes for an obvious opening: make it shake, make it rattle, make it roar. And though the overwhelming feeling is one of trickery and spookiness, it doesn’t hurt that the drums’ beat machine takes over in the middle of the song. This lends itself willingly to the following song, “Bolide Débile” [Dare Devil,] a song that glistens with fantastic guest musicians. The sax and trumpet combination of Pierre Labbé and Maxime St.-Pierre, respectively, make the latter an uproar of fun. Sometimes delivering equally on harmonies; occasionally splitting the chords and taking turns on separate solos, the jazzier, funkier versions shine on many levels.

The title track is definitely a work in progress. Interestingly hashed out, through motions of twinkling keyboards, altering tempo changes and styles that can’t seem to agree on one take, the drive is all that’s needed for this band. Swirling around brooding chord changes, the guitar’s saving grace dissects the percussion with a glistening lick. While it calls for an analytical dissertation, Miriodor would never take themselves this seriously. Instead, this a massively built composition that reaps the benefits of the band’s talented musicians.

It’s not as if Miridor make qualms about what they’re trying to convey either, everything is fortified with an air of bold confidence. All this time, they’ve patiently waited to be discovered and while patiently and quietly putting together a massive catalog of music, Avanti! may in fact be their crowing achievement.

“Envoûtement” [Bewitchment] by Miriodor

Cuneiform Records