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Motel (remaster 2017)

by PAK

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  • 2017 remaster of PAK's epic 2005 ProgPunk masterpiece MOTEL. 1000 copies of the original CD release are sold out.
    Compact Disc (CD) + Digital Album

    "If there's one band I wish I've known about when I was still in NYC, it'd be Pak. These guys take music at throwing a pan filled with boiling oil at it, until this music explodes into furious runs of punk energy, with time signatures changing faster than you can say 17/8. They take their music and just smash into a thousand pieces on the wall until all's left is to do is dance hectically to this insane groovy syrup.
    The influences to be found here are many, from as I said punk, funk, avant-garde, free jazz, neo-classical, polka (sure why not), spazz-core, hardcore, jazz-core, the Earth's core, any other musical sub-genre which you can play in a thousand miles an hour and call it core in the end. I mean how fast can a band band possibly play without all the gears in their body catching fire and melting off? Composer Ron Anderson just has these incredible lines running all around the songs, sometimes not as in-your-face as you'd expect, making the album a joy for repeated listens as there is really a lot to find in this album. Not to say that this is album is melodic, I mean, god, no. You can hear a melodies strongly, but the sound itself is unbelievably chaotic, it's just un-human. There's because of that a definite challenge to get into the album, but you always enjoy listening to it (if you're a fan of the avant genre) and it has that raw punk energy, shot through a avant-garde cannon, it's just a treat.

    The ferocity of the songs make the album go by quickly. The hilarious opener "You Like It Like That", is some sort of ferocious beast twisting in weird rhythms and singing about sex and lust. Just mind-numbing and hilarious. It gets a bit hard to distinguish songs after that, they're all great. "Heatwave" just charges at you with its insane speed. "100% Human Hair" also just bites off your head. "Everybody Likes You" is almost constructed like a trad-jazz piece, with main melody, insane solos and riffs, and main melody. It's one of the most fun epic tracks I've heard. "Zugzwang" is the first time they actually slow down things, after a sort of hard-rock thing in the beginning the song slided into this very cool sort of piano A- Capella, which unwinds towards the end. Creepy and beautiful. "Bienvenue A L´Hotel Plastique" starts off a bit slow, and just transforms into this chaotic jam thing. The rhythm section is so different and syncopated so accurate that it makes me jealous.

    The musicians are some of the best I've heard. I have to say that drummer Keith Abrams plays so fast, so smart, so accurate, that I won't mind stating him in my top 5 drummers easy. He doesn't really run out of gas, ever. He plays so fast, and handles all the time changes masterfully, giving the songs a frame. Jesse Krakow is a bassist which I hope to be eventually. His lines are different, original, unique, fast, punchy, and precise. Him and Keith Abrams provide an excellent rhythm section, though they aren't really a rhythm section. Their playing is perfectly in sync and just gives Pak this wonderful groovy feeling to it. Main composer Ron Anderson's guitar work is just as good. His lines are played so fast, his power chords are so brutal. It's hard just trying to process what he's playing. Also there are great guest appearances! Carla Kihlstedt from Sleepytime Gorilla Museum is here (spelled correctly second time, I'm improving) and her contribution to this album is rather big and very very successful. Her lines and solos give the music an ethnic taste many of the times which just changes up this exquisitely. The horn section here will melt your face. Consisting of Stephen Gauci, Tim Byrnes, and Ross Bonadonna, they give a jazz-funk aspect to the music, and have some very enjoyable solos. They do such an incredible job on "Everybody Like You" that it justs puts a smile on your face.

    For the faint of heart this is not, for the avant hater is definitely is not, for the punk haters, and genre close-minded this is not. For the avant fan, who doesn't mind a little punk, ethnic, funk, jazz in their music, I would say pick this bad boy up.

    A solid 4.5, maybe even a 5.

    EDIT: After quite a lot more time listening to Motel, the very few parts I liked less grew on me to a point which they've become favorites (some of them). Absolute masterpiece of avant punk madness fun. Rating raised to 5 stars."

    Includes unlimited streaming of Motel (remaster 2017) via the free Bandcamp app, plus high-quality download in MP3, FLAC and more.
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Music: Ron Anderson © 2005 Re-mastered: Ron Anderson ©2017


2017 remaster of PAK's epic 2005 ProgPunk masterpiece MOTEL.
1000 copies of the original CD release are sold out.

"Punctuated by vocals this is really an instrumental record, and shows the tremendous skills of all involved. The interplay between the trio is incredible, and the recordings are so sharp that nothing is missed." Squidco

"Depending on where from you're started, "Motel" ' s music could sound for you like if Ramones switched to complex avant-improvs music or like Japanese Ruins went to NY Downtown and decided to become punk band. Mixing NY punk aesthetics with Japanese avant-prog angular noisy brutality, PAK play really original music here - punk-rooted with guitar improvs,violin and trumpet and complex angular rhythmic constructions. From other hand, their sound isn't so radically brutal,as on many Yoshida's projects." Fan


released January 1, 2005

Ron Anderson - guitar, piano, voice
Jesse Krakow - bass, voice
Keith Abrams - drums

Carla Kihlstedt - violin
Ross Bonadonna - alto, baritone sax, piano
Tim Byrnes - trumpet
Stephen Gauci - tenor sax

recorded at Wombat Studios, Brooklyn NY
recording engineer - Ross Bonadonna
additional recording and mixing done at RA Sounds, Brooklyn NY
mixing - Ron Anderson and Keith Abrams
2017 re-mix - Ron Anderson
photos - Keith Abrams
artwork- Ron Anderson
disc photo and artwork - Keith McMenamy

all compositions arranged by PAK under the direction of Ron AndersonMusic: Ron Anderson © 2005
Re-mastered: Ron Anderson ©2017


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Ron Anderson New York

"Ron Anderson is among the lifers forming the vital backbone of the NYC new-music scene" - Time Out New York
"Part musical genius and part delirious madman, when you're listening to Anderson's music you're never quite sure whether you're listening to the ravings of an insane musical genius or the genius moments of a totally unschooled dilettante."Deep Fry Bonanza
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