In 2011 I reviewed the album Fast And Blue (see review) by Lisa LaRue 2KX. This band, led by an American female keyboard player from Oklahoma, made a top-notch album at the time! The strong compositions on this release remembered me many times of the music made by Yes. Due to serious health problems she didn't manage to come up with a following up album. Three years later the outside world could enjoy some of her music again. This time under the name of 2KX she released an EP with the titleSussuration.
Too bad that this first musical effort after three years only lasts half an hour. I only wished it had lasted much longer because what she presented music wise is of a very high level. The half hour of progressive rock music just tasted for much more. But I guess I must be glad of what she delivered with her band on this EP. A band that consists besides Lisa of Steve Adams (lead guitars), Mike Alvarez (cello), John Baker (vocals and guitars), Merrill Hale (drums) and Don Schiff (NS Stick).
The disc starts with an almost one minute long strange piece of music. The issuing 58 seconds are devoted to a seemingly somewhat oblique artist named Johnny Unicorn, an acquaintance of Lisa Rue. Unicorn contributes an intro to the EP, in which he - blessed with comic talent - lists the names of all 2KX musicians. While he does this he is accompanied on the acoustic guitar and keyboards. After this fun intro you can enjoy an almost twelve minutes long version of Sussuration. This epic piece can be labelled as a mix between Yes and The Flower Kings. To give the track more variety some ambient passages are included which are interrupted twice by some jazz-rock parts played on the violin and Stick. The following Lemniscate is again a rather long track which lasts thirteen minutes. It begins with some gentle cello sounds, gentle slide guitars and multi-tracked keyboards. Together they create a very beautiful soundscape with music reminding me of bands such as Iona and Clannad. After some ambient passage the music explodes and the electric guitar and Stick take the lead. Occasionally a saxophone tries to get involved too. After this musical storm comes to a rest a beautiful gentle musical part can be enjoyed. A special mention to this track is that Saga's Michael Sadler added some background vocals to this song. However don't expect to hear traces of Saga! A four minutes long radio edit of Sussuration ends this EP. Left out are all the ambient and jazz rock parts. What's left is indeed a rather friendly radio tune.
Over all, this EP was certainly worth listening to. As mentioned before, much too short. But I guess I just have to play it more often until a new release of 2KX is available!
**** Henri Strik (edited by Astrid de Ronde)
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