Back into the playlist groove after the summer, I’ve got round to doing some reviews…some ace albums linked below. Then there’s the usual mixture of the raw, the cooked, and the generally freaky. Enjoy!
This Man by Nudity
“In many ways this album is something of a hard sell. A collection of tracks from the last decade that move from three minute garage standards to twenty minute sitar wig-outs; and many points in between. All this from a band that has had a significant change in membership over the years, and doesn’t often play these tracks live nowadays (and released a very well received album, ‘Astronomicon’, last year). Yet this double album somehow hangs together very well because it is played throughout with such intensity, such immediacy and such meaning that it is irresistible to those of us who just love music. It has certainly clicked with me and I am in little doubt that, barring something utterly amazing happening, this will most probably be my release of the year and (with apologies to others) by some margin.”
What Do You Think? by Big Mountain County
“Big Mountain County are the sort of band whose music lends itself to live performance, and because of this, I much prefer this live album to the previous studio release. It completely makes sense to me that the they would want to put this out after only one LP on the books. They are a band who seem to have evolved into a really great psych blues live act, perhaps because they’ve maintained that gritty punk aesthetic, and ‘fuck you’ garage attitude. Either way this is a good live album to explore for anyone who loves their music rough, ready and raw.”
Campomorto / E Kipa Mai by Heroin in Tahiti
I finally got round to buying the debut album from this utterly marvellous Italian band. I have to say that it surpassed my expectations in that it was every bit as good as the more recent ‘Sun and Violence’ which is in itself amazing. Check them out at the Boring Machines website.
System of 1000 Lies by Morgan Delt
I was fortunate enough to go and see Morgan Delt live in Berlin last month and was totally blown away by the band’s performance coming over much differently than with the recorded work. This track, from the new album ‘Phase Zero’ is really beautiful and well worth checking out…the album itself is a real grower.
National Drone by Hills
I can’t believe it’s a year since I reviewed the superb ‘Frid‘ album by Sweden’s Hills. Then I wrote “‘National Drone’…is a strong statement of intense inclusivity where East meets West. It is a melange of sound which is as coherent as it is esoteric as sitar, guitar, groaning vocal and delicate sound effects propel the listener into an intense experience.” Since then it’s continued to grow in my consciousness. Amazing track from an amazing band.
Space Witch by The Kumari
I was really pleased to have seen The Kumari support Sundays and Cybele in Leeds earlier this month. It was a great gig in and The Kumari really played their part in making it so with a really exciting performance, one of the highlights being Space Witch. The band have brought out five singles so far, with an album on the way next year. You can shear and read more on their bandcamp page here.
Battery Room by Black Hill Transmitter
The Future Sound of London were one of my favourite bands in the 1990’s, and while they are still producing some great music under that name (and have a great re-issue programme going on) I was really pleased to discover this Black Hill Transmitter album, which is Garry Cobain and Brian Dougans operating under another name. The album is akin to the duo’s more ambient work with a more ‘krautrock’ sort of influence. It’s great and up there with their best work in my humble opinion.
The Spaceman by Cosmic Dead
The Cosmic Dead really need no introduction here, this is a great track (aren’t they all). This is from ‘Psychonaut’ (2011) an album of early jams..sit back and enjoy.
Aluminium Foil by Ramayana Soul
“This is not one of those albums that grabs you straight away and demand you listen to it. It is far more subtle than that. The mixture of Eastern and Western psychedelia (if that’s not too crude) means that you really have to find a way to access it before really delving into its intricacies. Once this is done you can really come to appreciate the way in which diverse genres have been brought together in a way that feels deliberate and natural, even when the result is quite dissonant. For me, then, this Ramayana Soul album is another example of how Guruguru Brain is introducing new and innovative music that is both Asian and psychedelic at its core; and for that I thank them.”
Read the full album review here.
Acidic by Zone Six
Track from the album that made our 2015 ‘Essential Psych‘ list, where Adam Harmsworth (Drone Rock Records) wrote:
“This album automatically warrants a place on this list purely due to the fact that it introduced me to the world (and rather large back catalogue!) of Electric Moon and Sula Bassana. For that reason alone I thank you Deep Distance from the bottom of my heart. The fact that this record totally fucking rocks is an added bonus. Bass, keys, guitar and drums may be the chosen instruments of many bands (psych or non-psych) but here they are much more than the sum of their parts. It be just 4 tracks long but the freakout level and sheer quality of playing is second to none. Beneath the brain-frazzling layers of guitar and synth, the rhythm section of Dave Schmidt and Komet Lulu (both of Electric Moon “fame”) keep the beautiful motorik groove going. This is modern space/Kraut rock of the highest order.”
Bathsheba by Kobadelta
Great track from the Newcastle band’s forthcoming EP ‘The Metaphysical’, released on October 8th, available to pre-order shortly on their bandcamp here.
Liquid Memoryman by The Oscillation
One of my favourite Oscillation tracks, from the 2007 album ‘Out of Phase’.
El Memorioso by Psicomagia
Terrific track from Psicomagia’s debut LP on El Paraiso records. As a label El Paraiso have, in my opinion, yet to put a food wrong but this is one of the label’s strongest for me. A great fusion of jazz, motorik and prog elements…to name just a few.
Night Time Worker by Sex Swing
Genre defying band featuring members of Mugstar, Part Chimp, Dethscalator, Earth & Dead Neanderthals, this track is being released on a 7″ split with Clinic on the God Unknown Records (run by band-member Jason Stoll). See bandcamp for further details here.
Mystic Ocean by Sundays and Cybele
Live opener at the Sundays and Cybele gig that I went to in Leeds recently. It’s an absolute stormer live as you may expect.
You can find my other writing for Backseat Mafia here.