THE VEGETABLE ORCHESTRA

reviews

Green Album

Throughout there is a lot of variation in approaches and with the pieces being brief and to the point this is a release with a  considerable amount of speed. Throughout this is a most lovely release indeed.“ FdW, vital weekly 1156 (NL)

ACL 2018 ~ The Top 20 Albums of the Year! A true fusion between modern classical compositions and West African folk, this band plays it all: bell pepper trumpets; leek violins; carrot kazoos; and more! And it’s dynamic; consider two tracks back to back: “Perfect Match” could almost be a Fraggle Rock rap battle gunning for Top 40, its pounding gourds ground helium vocals; the psychedelic “Fasern” rides a rock groove resembling Rafael Toral’s Space Quartet—like Toral’s music inventions, these instruments are also home-made, although The Vegetable Orchestra’s have the additional benefit of first being home-grown. Seeds not included. Todd B. Gruel, a closer listen (US)

ACL 2018 ~ Top Ten Experimental ...the Green Album shows the Vegetable Orchestra at its most comedic, which is to say, also, at its most serious. The experimentalism of tracks like “Perfect Match” grows out of an impulse to play, its quirky voice groans and electronics an integration of nature and artifice. It’s a practice of sound sculpture in a traditional sense, carving out the essential aural qualities of plants and reinforcing them with an avant-garde approach to electronic music. It verges on the wondrous strangeness of vanguardist outsider music like Moondog or bands like DVA: in short, it’s a grower. David Murrieta Flores, a closer listen (US)

You need this natural anomaly in your library, in your life. TJ Norris, TONESHIFT (US)

Enfin, u had het al begrepen: deze bioloog is gewoon wildenthousiast over dit organische album met zijn unieke groentenklanken en -instrumenten en over het ganse hoogstoriginele concept van The Vegetable Orchestra en daarom eindigen we deze review met hetzelfde woord als we hem begonnen: geniaal! Henk Vereecken, Darkentries (BE)

...extraordinary, unique and interesting album release. Check. BAZE.DJUNKIII, NITESTYLEZ.DE, HAMBURG (DE)

Die Stücke schwanken zwischen sehr interessanten Klangexperimenten wie das Einstiegsstück, bei dem sich dem Hörer die Flötenklänge surreal um das Gehirn drehen, über irgendwie orientalisch klingenden Pop wie “Schwarzmooskogel“ bis hin zu Stücken die mit Hip-Hop-Rhythmen spielen. ... Sicherlich ist The green Album nichts für die nächste Elektronikparty, aber es zeigt durch einige durchaus schräge und ebenso interessante Sounds auf, was so alles machbar ist und bietet diese Klänge in einem durchaus durchhörbaren Konzept an. Wolfgang Kabsch, musik-an-sich (DE)

Playful at times, and not shying away from the sheer silliness of what they’re doing, nevertheless underneath the novelty the Vegetable Orchestra is a musically valid and interesting listen. Stuart Bruce, Chain D.L.K. (US)

Das Green Album (Transacoustic Research, VÖ: 19. November) – ihr erst viertes Album in zwanzig Jahren – mischt die Gemüseorchester-typische von Minimal Music inspirierte Klöppel- und Blas-Electronica noch einmal neu auf. Rhythmisch und instrumentell aufgelockert erinnert das Green Album manches mal an die tolle halbimprovisierte Aufnahme des ultimativen Gassenhauers der Minimal Music, Terry Rileys In C, die Africa Express vor drei Jahren in Bamako, Mali aufgenommen haben. Groove, 11/2018 (DE)

Other Reviews

...highly unusual and tasty musical performance... (CBS Sunday morning Show, USA)

Onionoise, their third album in 11 years, bares the fruits of that search with every crackle, gurgle, honk, squawk, tweet, bleat, thump and bump of countless combinations and servings of one of the world\\\\'s greatest food groups. [...] ... a Vegetable Orchestra album that demands to be listened to over and over. (Exclaim Magazine, Canada)

what makes the music more than just a curiousity, however, is the fact that even if the instruments weren\\\\'t so unusual, the funky grooves they conjure and the hauting wisps of melody stand up on their own. The fact that these sounds couldn\\\\'t be made in any other way just amplifies the accomplishment of such beauty. (Andrew Choate, Signal to Noise Magazine, USA)

The Vegetable Orchestra blows carved-out carrots, taps turnips, claps with eggplant cymbals, twangs on rhubarb fibers, and rustles parsley and greens, all in the creation of an experimental sound that eventually winds up -- literally -- in the audience´s stomach. (Washington Post, USA)

It´s quite liberating [...] it also leaves behind a residue of curiosity about other everyday objects. (The Guardian, UK)

[…] des choux verts électrifiés dont les belles distorsions auraient ravi Jimi Hendrix, de solides potirons pour marteler une techno d’enfer à en faire trembler tout Beaubourg. (Le Figaro, France)

Vienna, Austria is one of the great musical cities of the world. It’s been home to Beethoven and Schubert, Mozart and Brahms. And now: the Vienna Vegetable Orchestra. (The World, BBC, USA)

The Vegetable Orchestra´s first concert in the shanghai center theater will undoubtably be the freshest ever performed in the city (Shanghai Daily, China)

Compositionally strong and amazingly recorded! If this cd doesn’t have you saying WTF then i don’t know what will [...] HIGHLY RECOMMENDED!!! (Down Town Music Gallery NYC, USA about the CD ONIONOISE)

Sie bedienen Plattenspieler mit Bohnenschoten, machen aus Karotten Flöten und zerschmettern in Jimi-Hendrix-Manier Kohlköpfe auf der Bühne. Der Sound dieses Gemüse-Orchesters ist einzigartig. [...] Mozart hätte an dieser neuen Wiener Schule wohl seine helle Freude gehabt. (RP online, Germany)

une musique organique, foisonnante et passionnante dans ses aléas et ses accidents. (Mondomix, France)

Ce qu’on aime surtout, c’est l’étrangeté de la musique que l’orchestre tire de ses choux amplifiés, en lien direct avec la tradition expérimentale viennoise […] (Chroniqu’Art)

ONIONOISE ist ein außergewöhnliches Stück Musik geworden. Und das nicht nur aufgrund des ungewöhnlichen Instrumentariums. Nein, auch aus kompositorischer Sicht entwickelt sich die ganze Angelegenheit zu einer sehr spannenden Sache. Es macht schlicht und einfach Spaß, den sehr vielschichtigen Nummern zu lauschen, offenbaren diese doch auch nach mehrmaligem Hörgenuss immer wieder neue Geheimnisse. (Music Information Center Austria MICA, Austria)

Die eigenwillige Mischung aus experimenteller Elektronik, Ambient, Noise und Minimal Techno klingt nicht nur interessant, sondern wirklich spannend und gut. (Falter, Austria - ONIONOISE ALBUM REVIEW)

Best vegetable music (Chicago Tribune, USA)

There´s plenty of fascinating sonic material to explore on an album that moves confidently among the worlds of lush exotica, techno-funk, noise, and ambient... (Tiny Mixtapes, USA about the CD ONIONOISE)

The music is unique, fascinating, and bizarrely charming (as are the players) (Financial Times, UK)

Los músicos aseguran que con los instrumentos de verdura es posible conseguir un estilo único y totalmente nuevo que nunca podrán alcanzar los instrumentos clásicos musicales. (La Vanguardia, Spain)

Playing with food never had such interesting results. [...] The concert was truely a sensory experience towards the end when the sharp scent of celery and onion filled the venue and juices from bruised vegetables stained the performers attire. But this orchestra revelled in sound and as one left the concert more attuned to the aural rhythms of everyday life, it seems their devotion had paid off. (The Strait Times, Singapore)

Un vitaminico universo sonoro [...] resterete sorpresi, incuriositi, conquistati, spiazzati, sintonizzati sulla pazzia dei kraftwerk, una cui cover è qui un motivo conduttore. (La Reppublica, Italy)

The groups concept is a testament to human ingenuity. (The Daily Gazette, USA)

Bluffant (Le Ouest, France)

Un concert exceptionnel. (La Manche, France)

Voilà donc de la musique en tout sens, qui pourrait n’être qu’un amusement de la modernité écologique, un air du temps. Mais non, c’est tout un art, une école d’exigeante technicité, une voie de recherche musicale empruntée par le Vegetable Orchestra à Vienne. (Dernières Nouvelles d’Alsace, France)

The vegetable orchestra concocts sweet sounds. (Times Union, USA)

Likely the world`s only orchestra that handcrafts its own instruments before each concert. (The Daily Book of Art, 365 readings that teach, inspire & entertain, USA)

Al loro concerto si resta stupiti, si sorride, si apprezza, e alla fine si resta conquistati. É musica contemporanea che sposa Cage, Xenakis e Messiaen [...] a suoni inspirati all` electronica contemporeana e alle percussioni africane. [...] ma intanto, suelle ultime note del concerto, che i piú piccoli seguono con incredibile attenzione, un buon odore di zuppa si spande della sala. (La Repubblica, Italy)

With cabbages leaves aping the sounds of knob-twiddling, mashed aticholes, creating digital-esque static, dried and hollowed out squash standing in for an ambient wash, crunchy celery stalks, crackling in the background, tumbling onions mimicking a rumble of drums and lettuce somehow evoking the sound of a dj scratching records, the first vienna orchestras show belonged solidly to the school of mille plateauxs clicks and cuts (The Daily Star, UK)

Das Ergebnis ist von teils moribunder Düsternis, dann aber auch wieder von gemütsaufhellender Funkyness. Noch organischer kann Popmusik nicht werden. [...] Da wird gebrätzt und geklotzt, elektronisch verzerrt bis zum rosa Rauschen. Man kann das originelle Onionoise übrigens auch Fleischessern empfehlen. (NOW magazine, Austria)

Un très bel hommage à la musique - pas à la tambouille - éxperimentale contemporaine (Orient le jour, France)

The city synonymous with Strauss and Schubert has once again left its mark on the world of classical music with an ensemble that claims to be the world’s first vegetable orchestra. (Scotland on Sunday, UK)

Their second CD, automate, manages, with tomatoes and celery sticks, to generate complex ambient hums and drones that highbrow electronic acts like autechre have spent years developping on mega-advanced super-computers. (VICE UK, UK)

Here is a strong novelty or comedy aspect to the whole project, but the music stretches beyond that. It is surprisingly well written and arranged, daring, challenging, and often surprising. the cover version of kraftwerks radioaktivität is hilarious, but the microsound mock-up automate can fool more than a few kim cascone afficionados. (allmusic.com)

With laptop musicians audiences rarely grasp how the sounds come to be. the vegetable orchestra, though, turns music into something you cannot only hear, but also see, taste and smell. (Kurier, Austria)

Cool grooves are weaved and shaken, from african polyrhythms to minimal techno on pumpkins, AUTOMATE shows how to avoid common traps for experimental electronic music. The ever present joy of performing gives the music a sympathetically restrained pop appeal. (SPEX #271, Germany)

The beauty of this record is that after a while you can stop wondering about exactly what they´re doing and what they´re doing it with, and lose yourself in the strange little sonic landscapes this lot conjure up. (BBC online, UK about the CD AUTOMATE)

Different than anything else ever heard in classic, jazz or pop (Süddeutsche Zeitung, Germany)

With the occasional help from mixers and juicers, the vegetable orchestra conjures from the blubbers, creaks and squeaks, veritable country, marches and even free core jazz to please even the most die-hard electronic music fans (Der Standard, Austria)

Some people need complex computer and synthesizer contraptions to create undefinable creaks and blubbers, hisses and roars, squeaks and screeches. But that is also possible quite naturally: with vegetables (Falter No.22, Austria)

The sound impressions are unique, at times magnificent (Basler Zeitung, Switzerland)