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Manifest

4.0 out of 5 stars 2 customer reviews

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Audio CD, February 5, 2008
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Editorial Reviews

Manifest is their fourth full-length, and the long-awaited follow-up to Cheesie's critically acclaimed Overnight which was made the Best of 2001's list by the New York Times. Cheesie continue their musical exploration of the railway environment, this time focusing on the freight trains & railway corridors that simultaneously divide & connect America's landscapes. It's an exhilarating journey through a realm of extremes, where stillness is shattered by jarring motion & cacophony subsides into silence. Using guitars, bass, drums, signal processing, samples, analog synths, organs, horns, & other instruments, they capture the interplay between the manufactured & natural worlds that railroads inhabit. 11 tracks. Plug Research. 2008.

Track Listings

Disc: 1

  1. Take the Lark
  2. Intercity
  3. Long Bridge
  4. Alone Together
  5. High Line
  6. Poughkeepsie Aflame
  7. CP Azure
  8. Magnolia Cutoff
  9. Farewell Diagonal
  10. Alphabet Route
  11. Hoosac


Product Details

  • Audio CD (February 5, 2008)
  • Imported ed. edition
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Label: Plug Research
  • ASIN: B001265POC
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #847,981 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

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Top Customer Reviews

Format: Audio CD
A smattering of electronics meets a healthy dose of post-rock on Chessie's fourth album, MANIFEST. Though the opening track, "Take the Lark" is all electronic, the guitar fuzz comes in heavily on "Intercity" and "Long Bridge." High-pitched squeals interrupt the measured tones of "High Line," but overall, most of the tracks have a delicate sensibility and a soft, gossamer construction. For example, a lonely train serves as percussion for the spare "CP Azure," while "Magnolia Cutoff" almost sounds like a lost Postal Service track. A train-like rhythm re-emerges in "Alphabet Route," but "Hoosac" rides out the rails on waves of sound. A nice soundtrack for your next Amtrak ride.
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Format: Audio CD
I am just blown away by the music on this album. It's great driving music. It's great walking music. It's great train music. It's just great music. Listen for yourself - but don't judge right away - give it time. This isn't immediately accessible music. It is totally instrumental abstract sonic art. These aren't pop tunes that catch you right off and then leave you bored down the road; they are the opposite. These songs get under your skin over time and become a subconscious soundtrack to your dreams. I give this album my highest recommendation.

There is a complex fusion of sounds in Chessie's music - textures are looped and layered in an increasingly intricate way in each song. The sounds are superb: some abstract and electronic, some familiar and musical. The textures are all over the sonic map: pretty, ugly, yearning, harsh. Sometimes the music is mellow and hypnotic; sometimes it's melodic; sometimes abstract and mechanical. The sounds of trains and train yards are recurring themes. Sometimes I think I hear Chinese melodies. The songs loop recurrently, gradually evolving, in a way that reminds me of African music. Sometimes there's a break and a song becomes wildly different. This is very interesting stuff.

Chessie's music has evolved in incremental - but really great ways since 'Overnight". This is the same kind of hypnotic electronica - loops and layers that grow and gradually change in ways that are subtle and strangely moving. Abstract and yet emotionally resonant - where does this power come from? I have this experience sometimes with modern visual art - something abstract is powerful emotionally paradoxically. In my view that's a very neat trick and what art is all about. 'Overnight' was an incredible album.
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