Imps Bring Out The Imps

Imps are an alliance between Malmo-based electro surgeons Minilogue and a couple of jazz players from Australia: Ian Chaplin and Philip Rex. With an emphasis on preserving the live energy of the week-long studio jam that created this project, the disc indulges in long, rambling jams, complete with impromptu studio dialogue woven into the rhythms. Given the jazz vocabulary here, most tunes are mid-tempo, with lots of telltale ride cymbals and expansive solos on vintage keys. Like most jam-based music, it stands or falls on the persuasiveness of the original groove. No amount of Moog or Rhodes soloing can take an electronically constructed groove of static tempo to the next level if the foundation isn’t there. Thus, songs like "Almost Live, But Certainly Plugged” succeed with a dedication to pushing and pulling at the loping groove with near constant dub effects and a convincingly head-nodding funk. The percussive Middle Eastern-isms and tonalities of "Heaven and Bagpipes” start well but overstay their eight-minute length. As the disc wears on, truly uninteresting ambient excursions with dull sax contributions detract from the promising beginnings. Nevertheless, there are a few winners here that should encourage further collaborations. (Mule)