December 19, 2016

Mike Keneally: Scambot 2 + Inkling

photo: Per Sviggum
BEST OF 2016

The still unfinished Scambot trilogy by guitarist and keyboardist Mike Keneally is a project that is moving at snail's pace. The first album came out in 2009, after five years of work and now the second part has finally seen the light of day. The first bite and pieces for Scambot 2 were assembled 17 years ago. He played in Frank Zappa's 1988 touring band as the resident stunt guitarist (he could play anything that was composed by FZ). Take into account the influence of his other musical heroes, Todd Rundgren and The Beatles, and you have a recipe for a bewildering bunch of songs, ranging from prog-metal to acoustic musings and everything in between.

Scambot 2 is a story, but there is no need to fully grasp the story line - no one can, but when approached as a study in mood swings it comes close to the musical equivalent of a shouting match between Jackson Pollock and the Pre-Raphaelites. There are wild guitar excursions with prog rock time signatures and skewed, gentle pastoral passages that will keep musical students throwing up their ams in amazement and horror. What the fuck is going on? Keneally is part Svengali and part storytelling uncle, a shapeshifter, a serious composer and a musical prankster.

The album is also available as a limited edition 2CD (2000 numbered copies. The second disc, Inklings, is a little less bizarre and offers some clarification in the choices made by Keneally for the main course.

Scambot 2 is released on his label Exowax. Buy it from his website.

Disc 1 - SCAMBOT 2:
  1. In The Trees
  2. Roots Twist
  3. Sam
  4. Clipper
  5. Forget About It
  6. Pretzels
  7. Buzz
  8. Race The Stars
  9. O
  10. Roll
  11. Constructed
  12. Freezer Burn
  13. Scores of People
  14. Cold Hands Gnat
  15. Proceed
Disc 2 - INKLING (More from the Scambot 2 Sessions):
  1. Presence
  2. Scambot
  3. Boghe
  4. Sickness
  5. The Coma
  6. I Named You
  7. Falafel
  8. O Elastic Love!
  9. Cram
  10. Mystery Song
  11. E
  12. The Scorpions
  13. Skating Backwards
  14. Tom
  15. Mayday!
  16. Lovesong
  17. Back It Up
  18. Inkling
  19. Uncompressed Rag


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