Music » Critics' Picks

Balmorhea

9 p.m. Saturday, September 4. The Firebird, 2706 Olive Street.

by

comment

Balmorhea succeeds where Emerson, Lake and Palmer and the Moody Blues failed. That diseased dream of fusing two antithetical genres — classical and rock — has crippled every other proggy project since "Nights in White Satin" made the London Festival Orchestra a boomer household name. Balmorhea founders Rob Lowe and Michael Muller ditch lyrics, and consequently skirt pretension, though when you're composing songs like "Bowsprit" — a pastiche of banjo, Glassian strings and chain-gang percussion — you're not going to win over the Lemmy Kilmisters of the world. If the Austinites have sometimes seemed to be cutting soundtracks for a Gus Van Sant movie about sad and lonely robots watching raindrops through a window, this year's Constellations feels more expressive and dynamic. Even its cosmological concepts expand, thanks to some gorgeous, wordless vocal effects, and stunning violin and cello climaxes.

Riverfront Times works for you, and your support is essential.

Our small but mighty local team works tirelessly to bring you high-quality, uncensored news and cultural coverage of St. Louis and beyond.

Unlike many newspapers, ours is free – and we'd like to keep it that way, because we believe, now more than ever, everyone deserves access to accurate, independent coverage of their community.

Whether it's a one-time acknowledgement of this article or an ongoing pledge, your support helps keep St. Louis' true free press free.