Reviews of “The Stone House”

“After listening to The Stone House multiple times, I was surprised to read that the music contained no overdubs. But more noteworthy was discovering the six pieces that make for a very rewardable listening experience were completely improvised, with no rehearsal and no written music… a remarkable lead instrumentalist in Wingfield… In other words, the sonic tapestry of all four instruments serves to enhance The Stone House’s inevitable storytelling atmosphere.”  Downbeat *****  (John Ephland)

“That the collective resume of this group of rising star musicians includes everything from more clearly definable jazz to something that can only be described as progressive music… means that The Stone House is a truly unique record in its undercurrents from a multiplicity of musical perspectives…”

“It’s an album that breaks many rules, but could only be made by four musicians who not only learned them first, but continue to apply them even as they find ways to push past them into new terrain. Completely unclassifiable, The Stone House is a record that will challenge many preconceptions while still being rooted in enough of the approachable to render its appeal to fans of progressive music… a career-defining record for everyone involved.”
All About Jazz (USA) (John Kelman)

“Be prepared to be blown away… instant game changer… profoundly innovative and compelling… immediately essential… I can’t even begin to describe how enthralled I am to have a copy of this stratospheric release by Wingfield, Reuter, Stavi, and Sirkis.”

“Two extremely original, brilliant and clearly innovative electric guitarists, Mark Wingfield and Markus Reuter, have created a quartet and laid down six tracks that exit from the boundaries of fusion-jazz, possibly entering post-rock. The Stone House easily see them stretching the textural and tonal qualities of their instruments”
Mediaversal Reviews (USA) (Wesley Derbyshire)

“I was completely taken aback and just in awe… It felt as if they were breaking the doors down of Jazz with a gigantic bulldozer… This is a spellbinding release”

“It felt as if they were breaking the doors down of Jazz with a gigantic bulldozer… The music itself is original, ominous, and eerie at its finest…”

“It felt at times listening to the entire album recalling the essence of the THRAK- era of King Crimson with a Holy Shit momentum.”

“When this was announced last year, my first reaction was “This is a perfect team, perfect match, perfect combination, and perfect quartet.” And I was right on the money with this.”

“This is a spellbinding record that MoonJune Records has released.”
Music From The Other Side of the Room (USA) (Z.Nathanson)

“Electrifying collective improvisation from four progressive masters… This album was recorded live in the studio with no overdubs, and completely improvised, with no written music or rehearsal, but you wouldn’t know it to listen to it.”

“The whole band charging ahead together as if by telepathy… demonstrates how conversational the group can be… It is rare for any improvised project to have the success rate achieved here.”

“Great as these players are individually, their collective performance is almost magical.”

All About Jazz (Mark Sullivan)

“The communication between the musicians is truly telepathic.  The individual performances by all quartet members are, as expected, quite amazing, both on the individual level and especially so on the ensemble level.”

“A splendid effort which should make all guitar fans extremely happy, especially since many of the things heard on this album are quite unique and certainly innovative.”
The Soundtrack Of My Life (Adam Baruch)

“What happens when four progressive Euro cats convene at a recording studio in Spain with nothing prepared beforehand? With no composed music, no rehearsals, overdubs expressly forbidden, no genre limitations… these four just plugged in and played. Spontaneous combustion creates fires but this spontaneous composition creates art.”

“Those who thirst for new sound should seek no further.”
Aquarian Magazine (USA) (Mike Greenblatt)

“Mark Wingfield and Markus Reuter… take the limits of their instruments and then just keep going. There are times when it is hard to realise that the sounds are coming from guitars as they are taken into brand new areas of tonal adventures.”

“Fully improvised music is rarely as compelling or interesting as this…  This is yet another incredibly important release from Moonjune.”
Jazz Music Archives (USA)

“Masterful… ensemble of great rank, equipped with tons of talent and expressive ingenuity, opening the field for the reign of the texture and the empire of impressionism within a sonorous scheme strictly demanding in the technical…. an hour of jazz-progressive delight.”

“We consider “The Stone House” as a 100% recommendable record for fans of progressive rock and jazz with especially adventurous motivations.”
Autopoietican (Spain) (César Inca Mendoza Loyola)

“Judging by the musicians one cannot expect something less than impressive when it comes to performances & music.”

“The most imposing thing of all is that “The Stone House” was recorded live in the studio with no overdubs and completely improvised, with no music written down or rehearsed. Can you imagine that? Do listen to a single track and please read the above line again. How that’s possible?! Every performance here is simply amazing! The guys play like they have rehearsed each music theme at least a dozen times! …. It’s hard to believe that this is a live recording.”
Grande Rock (USA)

“Rhythmic patterns allow the quartet to move from softly spoken music all the way to deafening rock and terrifying climaxes. This is not background music… Rocking passages such as the King Crimson-like Silver or the magnificent Fjords De Catalunya. You are entertained by sweeping landscapes and suggestive soundscapes.  Your are fed daring musical adventurers for nearly an hour before being treated Bona Nit Senior Rovira’s final moving chord.”
IO Pages Magazine (Holland) (René Yedema)

“A telepathic masterpiece of progressive jazz-rock musicianship.”

“Brilliant, fresh, honest and uniquely original music that truly defies categorization!” (USA)

“Wingfield and Reuter raise the mastery of the guitar to a cosmic level.  Both musicians are not afraid to go new ways, and are far from the standard guitar cliches.”

“The albums’s tracks are full of exciting dialogs and guitar solos which are like precious jewels, juicy bass inserts and polyrhythmic drum patterns…. The internal intrigue of the album is built on the almost magical interaction of the two first-class guitarists with the active support of the rhythm section… It is amazing that all the music of The Stone House is improvisational.”
Jazz Square (Russia) (Leonid Auskern)

“The Stonehouse is an impressive session from four musicians who are sure to be the cream of the international fusion scene.  The music on this album was recorded without anything preset or written down it was completely improvised. No overdubs!”

“The result is an enormously exciting album, on which the four participants are mutually encouraging each other on high-altitude flights on their instruments.”

“Free music, sometimes violent, sometimes meditative – always giving you goosebumps!”

“It’s over-used, but here the term “Super Session” really fits!” (Germany)

“Exciting music that feels structured with melody and yet has a surfeit of exciting improvisations and climaxes.”
Jazz Weekly (USA) (George W. Harris )

“On this monster disk of the Progrock, the cream of the international fusion scene has certainly come together to form an impressive session. All four musicians set their sights on absolute musical heights and improvised from a standing start without overdubs!  Here, the name “Super Session” really fits.  Shopping Spree!”
Jolly Joker`s Ohrenbalsam (Germany)

“Press play and you will be overwhelmed by ingenious and inventive prog rock with a jazzy jacket.  No ego-tripping as in the jazz world.  Each harmonious melody line is researched and turned into something spectacular.”
Keys And Chords (Holland) (Marino Serdons)

“There has not been a previous plan, a score, any rehearsal or overdubs.  The art and magic of the talent of each of these four musicians has reached such a high degree of communication and cohesion, that it’s as if they had written and rehearsed all the music before hand.”

“Bona nit Señor Rovira’s melody unfolds its wings at the hands of Wingfield who descends and placidly plots where to land.  Without realizing the 59 minutes and 54 seconds total have gone unnoticed but gladly that leaves us a taste to want to repeat many times listening to the essence that only a work of art knows how to capture.”

“Fjords de Catalunya… sounds very rehearsed!  As if they have been playing it year after year.”
Opinionynoticias (Venezuela) (Jordán Quintero)

“Rush starts the album: haunting guitar, a bit mysterious, see astral with an off-beat Free Jazz / Fusion which detonates and accompanies both perfectly! A twelve minutes that flies!”

“Be open minded and you’ll find an unconventional music made by musicians peerless!”
Profil Prog Reviews (Quebec) (Marc Thibeault)

“These four players, well-versed in transforming tangles of discursive strands into dazzling revelations, came together without any rehearsals or preamble, plugged in and took off. The resulting melange of rock-orientated grooves and languid drifts through spacey ambience is breathtakingly confident. With so much complimentary overlapping content and tuned-in acuity, you’d never guess that these six pieces were wholly improvised.”

“Moving seamlessly from speculative reverie to ferocious, tumbling interplay, the degree to which this music sounds intricately arranged probably stems from the quartet’s ability to swap the focus from its frontline to backline in the twinkling of an eye, a rare capacity that brings to mind Wetton-era Crimson’s forays into the unknown.”

“Wingfield’s impassioned guitar runs springboard from Reuter’s broad tonal sweeps.”

“Bassist Yaron Stavi, whose nimble interlocking with drummer Asif Sirkis frequently regulates both direction and temperature.”
Prog Rock Magazine (UK) (Sid Smith)

“The two guitarists create an interplay that goes beyond the limits of the instrument… an ingenious and resourceful progression against the common use of the six strings.”

“Dynamic and harmonious, emotional and powerful (the roaring start of Rush and the excellent Silver), in a crossover path where the conventions are lost and sounds make provocation.”
ProgressivaMente (Italy) (Luigi Cattaneo)

“Remarkable Spontaneous Electric Explorations.”

“Four of today’s finest progressive music artists got together to record an improvised album titled The Stone House. Although the music was not written or rehearsed, it’s not free jazz. Instead, Wingfield, Reuter, Stavi, and Sirkis treat the listener to remarkable electric musical explorations where the four musicians engage in an ongoing creative dialog.”

“The four instrumentalists constantly cross musical boundaries, injecting ambient electronics, prog rock machinations, psychedelia, jazz-rock and beyond.”
Progressive Rock Central (USA) (Angel Romero)

“Recording a live studio album with nothing written down or preplanned is a dangerous project to try unless you are the class of musician’s on this recording.  Improvised albums recorded without rehearsal often have a distinctive raw feel, but this album makes you feel the same quality you get at the concert hall after the band has refined  the compositions for a long period and rehearsed for many years.”

“Recently, I have been using the term “Beyond genre” to describe music that transcends or goes beyond genre.  I think this album is suitable for such an expression.”

“They expand the expressive possibilities of their individual instruments.  Making a musical experiment such as this, so successful is never easy.  Let alone one with the  emotional repertoire of this album.”
Progutopia (South Korea)

“The interaction between the men is almost telepathic.”

“The music is therefore downright nail biting and tension also continues in the quiet moments of the album. The tone is also put at ease with this incredibly exciting composition.”

“Silver stands out the rotating, hypnotic rhythms… this composition turns around like a real whirlwind. The beautiful guitar solo can be seen as the eerily beautiful eye of this hurricane.”

“This album deserves the designation ‘masterpiece’. The sound of these four men is energetic and intense, but therefore very exciting.  This album shakes you completely, but I know very little music more impressive.”
Progwereld (Holland) (Luke Peerdeman)

“Not unlike the atmospheres of Terje Rypdal ECM recordings (for icy space guitars) or Miles Davis post “Bitches brew” (for the electrical, instrumental and rhythmic expansion) and we could also add Robert Fripp, Bill Frisell… as many references to music which is very written and precise, while it seems that here everything has been improvised in the studio in one take. Wonder.”
Sefronia Chronique Jazz (France) (Igor Wagner)

“Bassman Yaron Stavi, who has a long association with Robert Wyatt, not to mention Phil Manzanera and David Gilmour, and the rarely unemployed Asif Sirkis, on dextrous but very powerful drums, have a telepathic understanding of where that anchor should be, even in these unchartered waters.”

“Atop that you have two of the most imaginative guitarists around, Markus Reuter of primarily Stick Men fame, although he has many more strings to his bow than that particular combo, and the much in demand Mark Wingfield.”

“An unrivalled confection of consummate deliciousness.”

“Listening intently – and you will – to The Stone House, it is hard to remember in places that this is all off the cuff, the arrangements unfolding before the listener, just as they did before the players as they switch attention from the top line to the rhythmic structure and back again with intuitive ease.”

“The album moves from spacious ambience to edge-of-seat thrills and back again… When this thing motors it inescapably recalls the mighty Crimson in their 1973-74 improvisational pomp in the way it takes risks; it is that good!”

“The sound throughout is gorgeous.”
The Progressive Aspec (USA) (Roger Trenwith)

“Completely improvised music which sounds super strong and convincing, it’s almost hard to believe that your are listening to a live recording of literally what happened on that memorable day (19 February 2016) in a studio in Spain.  But it was played by four awesome musicians so that explains something.”

“Six compelling instrumental pieces… and what an impressive example of “listen before you play” a credit to all four gentlemen.  Great CD.”
National Dutch Radio Vrije Geluiden VPRO (Holland) 

“Guitars become an otherworldly force in the hands of Mark Wingfield and Markus Reuter. The two bend the boundaries of traditional jazz-rock lines, using the guitar as a controller for electronics to lead into some beautiful sonic territories…gorgeous guitar-scapes.”
WFMU FM (NYC) (Irene Trudel)