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TRAUN

RIO/Avant-Prog • United States


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Traun biography
TRAUN is a music project created by drummer Dave Murray of Estradasphere (no, not of Iron Maiden ;). The pieces consist of progressive episodic music ranging from Gypsy-Jazz, Metal, Classical, Fusion, World, Electronic, Cinema and various other genre amalgamations.

The albums are intended to be listened to chronologically, as the songs reflect the beats of a science-fiction story described on the official website. Guest musicians include Timb Harris (Secret Chiefs 3, Mr Bungle), Jamison Smeltz (MiRthkon), Daedelus, Ben Wendel (Kneebody) and Tim Smolens (Estradasphere).

The 4 albums were released together in order to preserve production continuity. This final installation of TRAUN is the official follow-up to the 2003 release, "The Deserts of Traun". Album art, illustrations and animation were done by Colby Bluth, who has worked in the field of animation for Disney, Fox, Apple, Samsung and many other studios

==Written by Dave Murray, March 2018==

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TRAUN discography


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TRAUN top albums (CD, LP, MC, SACD, DVD-A, Digital Media Download)

3.55 | 12 ratings
Part III: The Lilac Moon (as The Deserts of Traun)
2003
4.00 | 2 ratings
The Lilac Moon
2017
4.00 | 2 ratings
The Black Metal Princess
2017
4.00 | 2 ratings
Escape From Spa 9
2017
4.00 | 2 ratings
Deleted Scenes
2017

TRAUN Live Albums (CD, LP, MC, SACD, DVD-A, Digital Media Download)

TRAUN Videos (DVD, Blu-ray, VHS etc)

TRAUN Boxset & Compilations (CD, LP, MC, SACD, DVD-A, Digital Media Download)

TRAUN Official Singles, EPs, Fan Club & Promo (CD, EP/LP, MC, Digital Media Download)

TRAUN Reviews


Showing last 10 reviews only
 Deleted Scenes by TRAUN album cover Studio Album, 2017
4.00 | 2 ratings

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Deleted Scenes
Traun RIO/Avant-Prog

Review by siLLy puPPy
Collaborator PSIKE, JR/F/Canterbury & Eclectic Teams

4 stars Ex-Estradasphere drummer Dave Murray's TRAUN project only has three EPs that tell this tale:

"The world of Traun is in peril after a flying health spa arrives at the outer rim of their star system. At the helm, a despotic tycoon named Voss ignites a trade war with the neighboring planets to acquire the water he needs to fill his baths. The capitol of Traun? the Fruitless Kingdom?has launched an offensive against Spa 9, but they have not been able to evict the illicit resort, nor regain control of their water supply. At this rate, life on Traun may be on the brink of extinction. But there may be hope brewing from within the sinister relaxation empire. The daughter of Voss?the Black Metal Princess?has been devising an elaborate ruse that will hopefully save the world of Traun, restore balance, and rescue her father from his own destruction."

There are, however, four EPs that were released and the fourth one is titled DELETED SCENES which is exactly what the name says, a bunch of leftover tracks and various different drafts of tracks from the TRAUN trilogy.

The four EPs are to be heard in this order:

The Lilac Moon The Black Metal Princess Escape From Spa 9 DELETED SCENES (bonus tracks)

Musically DELETED SCENES runs the same gamut as the other EPs with frenetic shapeshifting of genres that are classical music one second, jazz the next and maybe even some downtempo or heavy metal thrown in. They not only take the expected genre blending into extreme arenas but they also often incorporate extreme avant-prog avenues with crazy time signature changes as well as sudden start / stop tempo changes. Everything from dynamics, genres, tempos and moods mix it all up and often.

Seriously unless you really adhere to the story on TRAUN MUSIC dot com then this is really just a fourth album because i can't figure out from the music alone that any storyline exists behind it all. It's one of those series where you can just enjoy the music or actually add more intrigue by delving into the actual meanings behind the accompanying sounds. While the other EPs hover around the 20 minute mark, this one actually extends past the 31 minute mark making it the longest of the four. This one is just as good as the others and if you want to check these out, you really need to go for the whole shebang. Very cool stuff obviously catering to the Mr Bungle, Secret Chiefs 3, Estradasphere and Atomic Ape crowds.

 Escape From Spa 9 by TRAUN album cover Studio Album, 2017
4.00 | 2 ratings

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Escape From Spa 9
Traun RIO/Avant-Prog

Review by siLLy puPPy
Collaborator PSIKE, JR/F/Canterbury & Eclectic Teams

4 stars This Dave Murray is not the guitarist from Iron Maiden but a drummer who has been involved in a number of interesting musical acts including Estradasphere, Tholus and Sculptured however before he was getting all wild and crazy in the avant-garde rock and metal universe he started out with a grander vision of what would become a project under the name The Deserts of Trun which began all the way back in the 90s. It was designed to be a conceptual sci-fi journey through several albums about the world of TRAUN which according to the website TRAUN MUSIC dot com:

"The world of Traun is in peril after a flying health spa arrives at the outer rim of their star system. At the helm, a despotic tycoon named Voss ignites a trade war with the neighboring planets to acquire the water he needs to fill his baths. The capitol of Traun? the Fruitless Kingdom?has launched an offensive against Spa 9, but they have not been able to evict the illicit resort, nor regain control of their water supply. At this rate, life on Traun may be on the brink of extinction. But there may be hope brewing from within the sinister relaxation empire. The daughter of Voss?the Black Metal Princess?has been devising an elaborate ruse that will hopefully save the world of Traun, restore balance, and rescue her father from his own destruction."

After working with Tholus, Murray decided to bring his fantasy universe to life in musical form and recorded a rather out of sync sequel as his debut release titled "Part III: The Lilac Moon" under the moniker The Deserts Of Traun but was never happy with the weak production and video-gamish outcome therefore decided to reboot the whole series which brings us up to the modern day where he simultaneously released four EPs in 2017. Three of them are part of the series and the fourth is the leftover bonus tracks. Since the project took more than 20 years to complete, this is quite the ambitious effort and the fact that each EP hovers around the 20 minute mark make them quite accessible and the painstaking process of recording the wealth of sounds and styles with modern day technology makes these EPs substantially better than the 2003 album. Because this is a reboot, much material from that album was recycled and incorporated into the new releases.

The four EPs are to be heard in this order:

The Lilac Moon

The Black Metal Princess

ESCAPE FROM SPA 9

Deleted Scenes (bonus tracks)

``````````````````````````````````````````````````````

EP #3 - ESCAPE FROM SPA 9

This one doesn't quite hit the 20 minute mark and most tracks are barely over a minute long but pack in an album's worth of ideas at times. "The Deserts of Traun" begins the genre jumping journey with a sombre violin and classical piano in avant-garde fashion. "Making Haste" goes into frenetically paced jazz-fusion that alternates between slow and fast tempo. "Mayor Of Ghost Town" starts with a storm and a suspenseful mystery crime show theme style. This one has vocals and what sounds like a theremin. Police sirens and other noises jump in and out. "The Lone Coachman" spends a while in electronica land only to burst into heavy metal guitar riffing with an atmospheric backdrop droning away. "Pirate Stronghold" begins as a mellow classical string piece but turns into a cartoonish sounding form of accordion rock reminding me of Mr. Bungle.

"Lizardback" begins as a mellow acoustic guitar sequence that has a country vibe with slide guitar with some unexpected Tuvan throat singing. The title track is the longest and exceeds three minutes. It begins with some ambient noise and then bursts into crazy brutal prog with heavy guitars, electronic noises and ridiculously challenging time signatures. It goes through bursts of excitement and then calms down to nothing. The heaviest track on board and the most complex. "Vampire Invasion" is another classical / lounge jazz piano with violin in a tango type form. Some operatic vocals pop in from time to time with some death metal growls making an appearance at the end. "Flight Of The Water Baron" is a symphonic metal piece with heavy guitars, piano and then becomes a violin led classical piece and then they join forces. "The Fruitless Kingdom" is all over the place as well. Bouncy electronica cedes to mellow classical and then symphonic metal. "Mel's Home" ends the short album with jazz funk keyboard riffs.

At this point i still find no sings of an overall theme that connects to the music but it really doesn't matter. This music is like taking a long journey abridged into a short time span. This album is only 19 minutes plus of music but has a ridiculous amount of elements and complexity in its playing time. Very cool stuff obviously catering to the Mr Bungle, Secret Chiefs 3, Estradasphere and Atomic Ape crowds.

 The Black Metal Princess by TRAUN album cover Studio Album, 2017
4.00 | 2 ratings

BUY
The Black Metal Princess
Traun RIO/Avant-Prog

Review by siLLy puPPy
Collaborator PSIKE, JR/F/Canterbury & Eclectic Teams

4 stars This Dave Murray is not the guitarist from Iron Maiden but a drummer who has been involved in a number of interesting musical acts including Estradasphere, Tholus and Sculptured however before he was getting all wild and crazy in the avant-garde rock and metal universe he started out with a grander vision of what would become a project under the name The Deserts of Träun which began all the way back in the 90s. It was designed to be a conceptual sci-fi journey through several albums about the world of TRAUN which according to the website TRAUN dot com:

"The world of Traun is in peril after a flying health spa arrives at the outer rim of their star system. At the helm, a despotic tycoon named Voss ignites a trade war with the neighboring planets to acquire the water he needs to fill his baths. The capitol of Traun?the Fruitless Kingdom?has launched an offensive against Spa 9, but they have not been able to evict the illicit resort, nor regain control of their water supply. At this rate, life on Traun may be on the brink of extinction. But there may be hope brewing from within the sinister relaxation empire. The daughter of Voss?the Black Metal Princess?has been devising an elaborate ruse that will hopefully save the world of Traun, restore balance, and rescue her father from his own destruction."

After working with Tholus, Murray decided to bring his fantasy universe to life in musical form and recorded a rather out of sync sequel as his debut release titled "Part III: The Lilac Moon" under the moniker The Deserts Of Traun but was never happy with the weak production and video-gamish outcome therefore decided to reboot the whole series which brings us up to the modern day where he simultaneously released four EPs in 2017. Three of them are part of the series and the fourth is the leftover bonus tracks. Since the project took more than 20 years to complete, this is quite the ambitious effort and the fact that each EP hovers around the 20 minute mark make them quite accessible and the painstaking process of recording the wealth of sounds and styles with modern day technology makes these EPs substantially better than the 2003 album. Because this is a reboot, much material from that album was recycled and incorporated into the new releases.

The four EPs are to be heard in this order:

The Lilac Moon

THE BLACK METAL PRINCESS

Escape From Spa 9

Deleted Scenes (bonus tracks)

``````````````````````````````````````````````````````

EP #2 - THE BLACK METAL PRINCESS

Each track has a storyline about how it relates to the concept. This is detailed in great artistic form on the TRAUN dot com website. This album, much like the Estradasphere albums Murray played on, runs the gamut of dreamy psychedelic ambience, electronic wizardry and heavy metal to bursts of jazz, folk and classical plus lots of ethnic influences as well. "The Voyage Home" begins with a mopey disoriented beat with guitars that sound like they're going in and out of tune. Very soundtrack feeling as with "The Lilac Moon." Ends with surf guitar incorporated. "Preparing The Pit" begins with sounds of an ominous storm but becomes echoey guitar with reverb. Piano and weirdness ensue with evil sounding vocalizations joining in and then metal guitar, bass and drums. These short tracks really are all over the place and nothing hangs around for too long.

"A Stranger In The Landing" jumps into avant-garde hard bop with a Latin flare. It quickly becomes symphonic prog and then adds heavy guitar and flutters around in freeform style. This second installment is much more surreal than the first and that's saying something! Once again it's amazing to realize that this is a huge project with thirteen musicians delivering rock (guitar, drums, bass, keys), classical (violin, viola, bassoon, cello, upright bass), folk (accordion, acoustic guitar, flute, mandolin) and jazz (baritone and tenor sax). "An Undisclosed Location" alternates between speakeasy lounge jazz, avant-prog and 60s psychedelic pop with a few spoken words to convey storyline details. "Looking For Clues" provides a marching band feel with military drums but becomes quirky and well, very weird! It goes all over the place with dreamy pianos, rock guitar, classical. Ideas last about five seconds on this one but it all strings together. This one actually lasts more than three minutes and goes through jazz, downtempo etc. "The Terrace Computer" begins as creepy ambience and then becomes angelic harp-like ambience. This one stays fairly consistent but still has outbursts of energy but remains fairly electronic oriented with guitar coming in.

"Miriaun Crossing" is a classical piano riff with violin and remains that way for the entire near two minute run! Very tranquil and a lull in the sonic storm that is this album! "Mel Function" jumps into a loungy jazz mode with a sultry sax and a rather normal sounding generic delivery and stays that way. "Passage Through The Mire" begins with crickets chirping and arpeggiated guitars creeping in with jittery electronica. It becomes ominous soundtrack type music with a sombre cello and raspy ghoulish vocals in the horizon but morphs again into rather Middle Eastern sounding rhythms but remains somewhat on a leash although rock beats. This is rather unique but conjures up a hellish overall feel that finally unleashes the black metal aspects although they only peek in before disappearing into the classical symphonic backdrop. Excellent orchestration here with even some surf guitar coming in at the end. The title track ends with a mellow folky vibe orchestrated with piano and harp that picks up with black metal elements and freaky ghoulish vocals. This album is only 22 minutes plus of music but has a ridiculous amount of elements and complexity in its playing time. Very cool stuff obviously catering to the Mr Bungle, Secret Chiefs 3, Estradasphere and Atomic Ape crowds.

 The Lilac Moon by TRAUN album cover Studio Album, 2017
4.00 | 2 ratings

BUY
The Lilac Moon
Traun RIO/Avant-Prog

Review by siLLy puPPy
Collaborator PSIKE, JR/F/Canterbury & Eclectic Teams

4 stars This Dave Murray is not the guitarist from Iron Maiden but a drummer who has been involved in a number of interesting musical acts including Estradasphere, Tholus and Sculptured however before he was getting all wild and crazy in the avant-garde rock and metal universe he started out with a grander vision of what would become a project under the name The Deserts of Träun which began all the way back in the 90s. It was designed to be a conceptual sci-fi journey through several albums about the world of TRAUN which according to the website TRAUN dot com:

"The world of Traun is in peril after a flying health spa arrives at the outer rim of their star system. At the helm, a despotic tycoon named Voss ignites a trade war with the neighboring planets to acquire the water he needs to fill his baths. The capitol of Traun? the Fruitless Kingdom?has launched an offensive against Spa 9, but they have not been able to evict the illicit resort, nor regain control of their water supply. At this rate, life on Traun may be on the brink of extinction. But there may be hope brewing from within the sinister relaxation empire. The daughter of Voss?the Black Metal Princess?has been devising an elaborate ruse that will hopefully save the world of Traun, restore balance, and rescue her father from his own destruction."

After working with Tholus, Murray decided to bring his fantasy universe to life in musical form and recorded a rather out of sync sequel as his debut release titled "Part III: The Lilac Moon" under the moniker The Deserts Of Traun but was never happy with the weak production and video-gamish outcome therefore decided to reboot the whole series which brings us up to the modern day where he simultaneously released four EPs in 2017. Three of them are part of the series and the fourth is the leftover bonus tracks. Since the project took more than 20 years to complete, this is quite the ambitious effort and the fact that each EP hovers around the 20 minute mark make them quite accessible and the painstaking process of recording the wealth of sounds and styles with modern day technology makes these EPs substantially better than the 2003 album. Because this is a reboot, much material from that album was recycled and incorporated into the new releases.

The four EPs are to be heard in this order:

THE LILAC MOON

The Black Metal Princess

Escape From Spa 9

Deleted Scenes (bonus tracks)

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

EP #1 - THE LILAC MOON

Each track has a storyline about how it relates to the concept. This is detailed in great artistic form on the TRAUN dot com website. This album, much like the Estradasphere albums Murray played on, runs the gamut of dreamy psychedelic ambience, electronic wizardry and heavy metal to bursts of jazz, folk and classical plus lots of ethnic influences as well. Just within the first track "The Crystal Caverns" many of these genres are present. However while the first track is more on the aggressive side, the second in line "Aervallis" is more of an airy Celtic folk song with busy Disney-esque classical leanings that leap into heavy progressive rock and back to dreamy folk. It takes no time at all to realize this is a huge project with thirteen musicians delivering rock (guitar, drums, bass, keys), classical (violin, viola, bassoon, cello, upright bass), folk (accordion, acoustic guitar, flute, mandolin) and jazz (baritone and tenor sax).

"The Broken Barge" continues with a speakeasy jazz lounge feel while "Inn Of The Dreaded Hippy" is right out of the Mr Bungle playbook with crazy keyboard workouts and time signature rich prog jumping in and out of metal with every other crazy idea thrown in for good measure. "The Thieving Wall" only continues the eclectic output with crazy heavy prog rhythms angularly darting out all over the place at breakneck speed with a slight surf rock vibe. Sort of like Secret Chiefs 3 on steroids. "Greywater Hideaway" is sombre and piano rich as well as slow and sumptuous and short like all the track which all hover around the two minute mark with the exception of the opener which hits three. The title track is flute rich prog folk rock track with more Celtic feels while "Errands Of Captain Yargh" is an explosive death metal explosion with industrial overtones.

"The Old Road" is back to prog folk only in a love affair downtempo electronica. "Valeriana" begins with mandolin and sounds like Renaissance music but quickly incorporates heavy rock guitar stomping and then morphs into classical soundtrack music. Damn, it's hard to keep up with this ever-changing sonic feast! "Brig To Nowhere" begins with a pulsating electronic noise with a guitar playing in mono in the background but it becomes extreme metal guitar chugging with steady riffing but morphs into more progressive technicalities. Occasional breaks reveal a symphonic backdrop. "Embers In Snowfall" is a slow ambient folk outro. This album is only 21 minutes plus of music but has a ridiculous amount of elements and complexity in its playing time. Very cool stuff obviously catering to the Mr Bungle, Secret Chiefs 3, Estradasphere and Atomic Ape crowds.

 Part III: The Lilac Moon (as The Deserts of Traun) by TRAUN album cover Studio Album, 2003
3.55 | 12 ratings

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Part III: The Lilac Moon (as The Deserts of Traun)
Traun RIO/Avant-Prog

Review by UMUR
Special Collaborator Honorary Collaborator

3 stars Part III: The Lilac Moon is the debut album by avant garde rock/ metal act The Deserts of Traun ( the genre catagorization is to be taken with a grain of salt as the music on this album almost defies catagorization). Its a project by former Estradasphere drummer David Murray. Most instruments and vocals are done by David Murray, but there are several guest musicians providing musical details on the album.

There are 24 short tracks on the album ranging from about 1 - 4 minutes in length. The musical styles go from everything between jazz, fusion, classical, black metal, death metal, electronic music and rock. An extremely eclectic album. The album is a sci-fi concept album where the titles of the songs give hints to the scenery. Ive been listening a lot to another one of David Murrays projects this last year ( Tholus) and I noticed a funny conceptual continuity detail. The first couple of minutes of Battle Upon The Space Galleon ( from Part III: The Lilac Moon) are also used in the Tholus track Short Forevers from the technical/ progressive sci-fi themed death metal album Constant (2007). An album written by guitarist Mike Johnson who is also credited for additional composing on Part III: The Lilac Moon. Most of the music is composed by David Murray though and given the wide range of styles he is quite a talented guy.

While the music is interesting throughout the album albeit only for the really open minded listener, the production does drag my rating down a bit. Its a bit homemade if I may use such an expression and it sounds a bit too much like a hobby project for comfort IMO. Im sure a better sound quality would have meant that I enjoyed the album even more so its a bit of a shame really. Ill give a 3 star rating and warn those who like one type/ style of music on one album, and recommend the album to those who like experiments with many genres within an album. In my world this is truly progressive music ( for better or worse).

 Part III: The Lilac Moon (as The Deserts of Traun) by TRAUN album cover Studio Album, 2003
3.55 | 12 ratings

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Part III: The Lilac Moon (as The Deserts of Traun)
Traun RIO/Avant-Prog

Review by Drakk

4 stars Eclectic Movie Sound Track

Dave Murray (Ex- Estradsphere) was one of the driving creative forces of Estradasphere, and after his leaving the band, he decided to create a band after his own liking. Now, this is decidely not Estradasphere, despite it being of a similar formula, combing seemingly unrelated genres effectively into an odd tapestry of musical genres. However, The Deserts of Traun is a different entity altogether, with a completely different feel.

Instead of granoise compositions and longer tracks, TDoT uses much smaller and concise tracks, even drawing some comparisons to Fantomas, instead of Estradasphere. The songs feel, as they should, and are named as, like the sound track to an adventure movie, full of suspense and exotic locations, which the music pulls off wonderfully. The music has just about everything, from creepy ambient death metal, to ethnic folk music, to classical, to jazz and so on and so forth.

A very fun and interesting album, but one that should be listened to along with the visual aid.

4 Stars

Thanks to avestin for the artist addition. and to NotAProghead for the last updates

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