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Echo City

OffBeat, 6-1989, page 46:

British experimentalists seem to come and go, destined for mass cultdom and little more than minimal exposure. Echo City could easily follow that route, but it would be something of a shame. They are not the kind of fledgling weirdos that inhabit many a rack of European releases from the dark side. Although they're on a German label they are in fact British and they sound like something altogether less orthodox than any of our EEC contemporaries have come up with for some time. They are, for want of a better box, close on the heels of the infernal urban gamelan sound that was once the home of 23 Skidoo. Not the uptempo onslaught and near funk ideas, more the slower, better considered pieces where the pacing was more important than the blood rush. Echo City toy with all manner of percussive pals, they cast their sounds into a lucky bag of pianos and trumpets and come out, slowly, gracefully, as impulsive exotic beats ready to rouse the soul. Echo City are really rather good.

© 1989 Judy Mills - OffBeat


Q Magazine, 30-1989, page 73:

Echo City are a musical adventure playground. They design and construct huge percussive installations and run amok on them tooting and wailing mournfully through purpose-built wind instruments called Baliphones. Their North London industrial Gamelan is as sweet and accessible as groups like Neubauten or Test Department are heavy and impenetrable. Even though a trick like Catch stumbles unhappily into daft jazz boogie, A Shirtful Of Ice, Singaraja Bemo Ride and In Aluminium are throbbing, hypnotic and refreshingly alien. A fearsome racket called The Engineer highlights trumpet playing of orgasmic intensity from Paul Shearsmith, acieeed ciolin and vigorous audience participation at the London Musicians' Collective.

© 1989 Charlie Dick - Q Magazine

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