We’re glad to announce that Winnipeg, Canada-based instrumental electric rock band Mahogany Frog have released a new single, entitled “A Decision of the Flower.”
On March 25th, Mahogany Frog will be releasing their ambitious new album, entitled Faust: an original score set to the eponymous 1926 German silent film directed by F. W. Murnau, widely regarded as being among the greatest films of the silent era. Faust tells the classic legend of fate and temptation that dates back centuries; and Mahogany Frog have now woven a dark and diverse score around the film’s brooding tale of corruption, devastation and redemption that brings together the band’s collective experience in composition, experimentation, electronics, intense rock & roll, and searing fuzz guitar.
Mahogany Frog initially wrote and rehearsed the music for Faust over the span of three months, culminating in a premiere performance at the Roxy Theatre, a historic atmospheric cinema in Saskatoon; and three more performances in Edmonton, Calgary, and Winnipeg then followed. Accompanying the band on their tour was audio engineer Grant Trippel, who later recorded the studio sessions in February 2020.
Faust presents listeners with varied and complex moods that highlight Mahogany Frog’s diverse influences as well as their versatility as a band. Harsh noise, electronic drones, and pulsing textures flow in and out of dark and heavy guitar-driven riffage; while soothing washes of melodic synth-pop flow through syrupy, languid organs—only to be obliterated by the shrieks of the damned and the devil himself!
“A Decision of the Flower” is the first single from Mahogany Frog’s upcoming album, and it tells the story of the courtship between Faust and Gretchen. Faust has traded his soul for knowledge, youth, and worldly pleasures. When he tires and becomes unfulfilled with this life, he meets Gretchen and tastes true love; and this scene portrays the courtship of their new love.
“Gretchen’s love for Faust is foretold by a child’s game; just as it is steered by the Devil’s gambit,” says drummer/electronics wizard Andy Rudolph. “Gently pulsing electric piano interplays with each petal’s fall to the ground. But Beelzebub’s bass and the drums of chaos are close at hand. Multitudes of analogue waves lift the two lovers and carry them to their tragic fate.”
“A Decision of the Flower” opens with the peaceful melodies of a tremolo-laden electric piano, creating a pleasant feeling of tranquility and reflection. Airy synths soon enter the mix, their ethereal sustained notes harmonizing nicely with the electric piano, while adding a sense of wonder to the track. A dark, buzzily distorted keyboard later joins in along with sparse, foreboding percussion, the basslike timbres of the keyboard setting an ominous mood while building nicely on the track’s creative melodic themes. As the percussion settles into denser rhythms, layers of wavy synths float over the listener, creating a surreal atmosphere that reminds me of Boards of Canada.
At the same time that “A Decision of the Flower” perfectly accompanies this scene from F. W. Murnau’s 1926 silent film, Faust, it is also quite an enjoyable listen that showcases Mahogany Frog’s brilliant songwriting and superb musicianship. I would highly recommend this track to fans of progressive rock and downtempo electronic music alike.
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