Thursday, November 12, 2009

Vulcan Freedom Fighters - Stardate Unknown

It's difficult to describe this project without making it sound like a novelty. Stardate Unknown is simple in concept, Trekkies rockin' it out á la Man or Astroman style instrumental rock with Trek dialogue samples from the original series with a steady flow and a sound that doesn't seem close to an hour long. It's done well enough for the most cynical bastard to enjoy, even if you are not a total Trekkie. As hopelessly nerdy as that sounds, the music on Stardate Unknown places it light years beyond the throwaway gimmick that even the best description might imply. The quotes interplay with the tempo and intensity of the songs, arranged with such brilliance that even non-Trekkies would have a hard time not enjoying it. The dialogue is selected so that each song is an ode to the episode it was borrowed from, often with narrative continuity. Like the show, the songs are a compelling mix of action, suspense and innuendo, providing a shot of nostalgia for anyone who remembers the original series. Musically, it ranges from heavy Stoner Rock to more ambient and Techno sounds with lots of overlap. Atop a mix of live and sampled drums, reverberating bass and chiming guitar provide a constant organic counterpoint to the electronic percussion and keys. The tunes are also sprinkled liberally with sound effects from the show: tricorder chirps, phaser blasts and that unmistakable whoosh of the Enterprise's automatic doors. Aside from outstanding composition and performance, the other aspect that makes Stardate Unknown so surprisingly tasteful is reverence for the source material. Let's just hope the next album isn't full of quotes from The Next Generation. (Ezra Waller)

Romulan Divide,The Will of Landru,Cranium, Doomsday Machine, Horse Stealin' Scurvy Crew,Jelly in the Belly, Horta, The Death of Bele, Kahn, He's Dead Doctor, Argelius,Corbomite Manuever,Animal Flesh, Karta, Zefram Cochrane, We Are the Mertons, Spock's Deceit, Klingon Advance, Nomad,Is Anyone Aboard?, Where is the Captain?



Brandonio! said...

I can not stress what a great find this is for me DaBoss! Mucho Thanks!

Anonymous said...

This stuff is absolutely phenomonal Trek material. I only wish there were more! Also I entirely disagree about not wanting an album with TNG as the source...that would be grand in my view.

Oh and it wasn't mentioned in your review, but the song 'Horta' features a sample from Dune; Trek + Dune in a single song = EPIC

DaBoss said...

Thanks for the additional info Third World Man - I wasn't sure about where the dialogue came from. Glad you enjoyed as you know - we live to serve.

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