(All Album Reviews by ffroyd)
German drummer Marco Minnemann, aside from being a spectacular musician, has come up with a very unusual and quite original concept. A few years ago he recorded this enormous 51-minute drum solo and has been inviting people to write and perform music to it. To date, a number of artists have accepted the challenge including Mike Keneally, Mario Brinkmann, Alex Machacek, John Czajkowski, Phi Yaan-Zek and JK Kleutgens. I've heard portions of a few of these and they are remarkable. The one I managed to get was done by Trey Gunn, former member of King Crimson, master Warr guitar player and now an excellent producer. Trey and Marco first teamed up in Eddie Jobson's UKZ project.
Trey has named this work Modulator and every time I say the word I think about that old Bugs Bunny cartoon with Marvin the Martian and his "Uranium Pew-36 explosive space modulator". This is some seriously good stuff. Besides the drums, Trey plays all of the instruments which include guitars, keyboards, basses and touch guitars with the exception of track 13, "Spectra", which contains some droning Uilleann pipes and fiddle provided by Michael Connolly. Although it is one continuous piece of music, the disc is indexed it to 22 tracks.
Trey continues to produce high quality adventurous music and this one has quite a bit to enjoy. While it partially sounds like a totally improvised piece, there are parts that sound like he took some time to get the right arrangement. I'm sure Minnemann was pleased with the results. If you like Trey's music, I think you will be too.