"Will of the Waves"

By Dr. Abner Mality

And now for something completely different...

Bone Cave Ballet is not easy to quantify. Neither fish nor fowl, vegetable or animal, and totally atypical of what I usually listen to. Which is actually what makes it a breath of fresh air. No, sports fans, this is not metal at all or even really hard rock, but what is actually is, is very hard to describe.

How about alternative female fronted prog rock with a dreamy feel? That will have to do, at least as far as my own poor powers of description go. It's a four person outfit that actually sounds at times like eight people are in it. The voice and focal point is a lady named Jacqui Gilroy, who has a singing tone so clear and crystalline, it makes a fresh-scrubbed window seem muddy and murky by comparison. Sweet is one description for her, maybe a little bit too much so, but wow, what clarity! She also plays lead guitar for BCB and she actually comes up with some strong rocking leads and even an occasional powerful riff. But for the most part, the music of Bone Cave Ballet is gentler, jazzier stuff, with Tull-like flute work now and then. First cut "Breakup Yoga" starts with busy clattering percussion before drifting off into a pleasant meander along the ocean beach. The music is sometimes grandly pompous, sometimes on the dark side, but for the most part, it's airy stuff that seems to recall 60's psych and 70's prog while not being retro in the least. This last trick is tough to pull off.

Five wandering cuts are here on "Will of the Waves" and although the band explores textures, they never get too lost in themselves. The record doesn't wear itself out. I liked "Great Cycle" best of all because there was one hell of a cool metallic riff in the middle of it that really got me to sit up. Sometimes there's even a cacophonous burst of noise. But on the whole, blue skies prevail.

Frankly, this is not something I would indulge in regularly, but it's unique enough and soothing enough for me to recommend, particularly to lovers of prog and femme-oriented singer/songwriters like Tori Amos.