Review Summary: Another chapter the ever growing post-Bungle library by some of its most consistent writers
Out of the ashes of circus-metal pioneers Mr. Bungle, Trey Spruance took something unique and wonderful, steeped it in a pressure cooker of middle eastern lore and scales, and morphed it into his own entity. Being only one of the dimensions introduced on the Book of Horizons
record, this is a welcome explanation of the "Traditionalists" tracks it presented. Heavily Morricone, spaghetti western, and general bombast-influenced, the Secret Chiefs 3 give their interpretation of the cinematic soundtrack genre with an epic theme deconstructed and reanimated over the course of 30 tracks. Don't let the high track count discourage you, this is meant to be a continuous listen, likely only separated out for the sake of listener sanity (or lack thereof). Traditionalists
calls life, love, suspense, and chaos to the fore in any given section with dissonant chimes, lush horns and violin, and ominous Italian guitar atmospheres. A very strong (and eccentric) attempt at a soundtrack, the combining factor remains Spruance's trademark 60s rock tendencies and noise experimentation - a boon when implemented properly, these techniques have evolved much from SC3's early Grand Constitution
days. Initially immature and largely directionless in their chaotic meanderings, it's very refreshing to see a group grow and come full circle artistically in such grand fashion. Traditionalists
is a challenging journey and will not find constant rotation as such - just know that it's a ride well worth the effort.
Here's to further expansion of the Book of Horizons
personalities; with five chapters remaining, Secret Chiefs 3 have a bright future ahead of them.