Tuesday, Aug. 10, 2010

Orcha

Lost Out in the Abyss

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Orcha is all over the place, often in listenable ways. The Milwaukee quintet may have jam-band inclinations, but the group keeps things relatively focused on its debut CD. Lost Outin the Abyss mixes New Age acoustic guitars with heavier rock sounds alongside nimble piano and bombastic organ chords. Two percussionists add straight-up rock and more complex Afro-Latin underpinnings. It's almost as if the band offers an aural tour of the first half of the hippie 1970s.

Then come the lyrics and how they're vocalized. None of the five members gets a singer credit in the disc packaging, but the guy takes himself really seriously. And that can be amusing when he sings of the whale from which the group takes its name. Less amusing is when the same hubris is applied to more navel-gazing subjects such as voyaging to Atlantis and theorizing on how the whole of everything is comprised of energy (a physicist may agree, but still…).