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lauantai 23. maaliskuuta 2019

El Hombre Al Agua - Oumuamua Parts 1 & 2

NoiseAgonyMayhem (NAM 051)

Oumuamua Parts 1 & 2 is the second solo album by Dave Read, the bass and synth player of excellent Canadian space/psych rock group Moths and Locusts. He's also involved in other projects like the experimental psychedelic doom band Anunnaki. His first album as El Hombre Al Agua was released in 2017 on super limited  CD-R and LP (just 67 copies!) editions that are both sold-out. This new one is somekind of homage to the peculiar shaped interstellar asteroid Oumuamua that was first sighted in 2017 and has probably been cruising through the Milky Way for hundreds of millions of years. There have also been some speculation that it is a probe sent by intelligent alien species, who knows... Anyway, it's a perfect theme for a psychedelic, cosmic and spacey ambient drone album like this one.

Part 1 (side A) is divided into eight and Part 2 (side B) into four, shorter segments that fuse into each other seamlessly. The album starts off very quietly and slowly with "The First Distant Messenger" and all you have to do is close your eyes and pay attention and you are flying through distant space. The creative use of a vast array of instruments (guitar, bass, bass synthesizers, singing bowls, cymbals, electronic tampoura, synths, pedals etc.) assures a lush, enjoyable, full and very spacey journey through the galaxies. I like the track titles like "Vega, In The Constellation Lyra", "Towards Earth At 315000kmh", "600000 Years Alone With Nothing But Space Dust", "Oumuamua Speaks" etc. The overal vibe is very tranquil and ambient, but there's still enough stuff going on to keep you interested. It's not just drone since there is also some rhythm and melody in the mix. The album is fully instrumental and I prefer it that way. All in all, this is a great, adventurous and dark album of cosmic ambient space music that you should really check out. If you want the LP you must hurry up, though. The deluxe edition with cool, huge poster and CD-R (40 copies) is already sold out, but there are some copies of the standard issue (just 60 of those made) available. Both are on "space gas green" coloured vinyl...

torstai 21. maaliskuuta 2019

Lamp of the Universe - Align in the Fourth Dimension

Sulatron Records (st1808-2)

Okay, it's no secret that Lamp of the Universe has been one of my favourite bands (well, one-man-bands, anyway) ever since I first heard the first CD Cosmic Union released on Cranium Records in 2001. It was a perfect blend of Eastern mysticism and spirituality, cosmic vibes, acid folk, space rock and psychedelia and that's what still makes LOTU so special.  Multi-instrumentalist Craig Williamson from New Zealand has been busy with music since then and even before with his stoner rock band Datura. Be also sure to check out his recent, a lot heavier but just as hypnotic and mesmerizing band Arc of Ascent. Anyway,  Align in the Fourth Dimension is the 11th album by LOTU if you don't count the split LP's with Krautzone, Trip Hill and Kanoi. As always, Craig plays all the instruments (including guitars, sitar, bass, drums, percussion, organ, synthesizer and mellotron) by himself. The limited LP version has seven new tracks and the CD version has one extra track.

"Visitors" opens up the chakras with beautiful, melancholic acoustic guitar, analogue space sounds and soft, wonderful vocals. There's also some mellotron later on and I'm already floating deep in space! "Rite of the Spheres" is a heavier, hypnotic stoner rock mantra that works really well too.  "Light Receiver" is an Eastern-tinged acoustic piece in a more ethnic folk style, very nice. Then it's time for a slow, droney "New Forms" that has lots of cool ebow guitar too. Mellotron gives a nice, ethereal touch to the pretty and sad "The Leaving", sort of an astral ballad. We also get some fuzz guitar and drums later on. "Absolution" is a great, hypnotic sitar/acoustic guitar/percussion/vocals track that gets you in a trance. The CD-only track "Call from Beyond" is rather minimal with just acoustic guitar and beautiful vocals. It's also rather short (but sweet) at just 3:39. The album is finished off with the almost nine-minute "Seasons of Love". It somehow reminds me of The Spacious Mind from Sweden, very trippy, spacey, other-wordly and tranquil stuff. Amazing ending for yet another superb LOTU album! Warmly recommended.

keskiviikko 20. maaliskuuta 2019

L. Don Ōkami - Judgement Day at Pyynikki

Hulina Records (hulina-019)

Judgement Day at Pyynikki is the first solo album by  L. Don Ōkami, a pseudo name for singer and banjo/bouzouki player Prof. Donald Lupo now living and working in Tampere, Finland. He's aided by many Finnish musician friends here and the music varies from happy bluegrass (the opener "Road Dust") to traditional folk and even experimental avant-garde with psychedelic touches. Most of the compositions are self-penned, but there is one traditional ("Wife of Ushers Well") and two are covers ("Riding" by Roy Montgomery and "Veins of Coal" by Richie Stearns).

Needless to say, I prefer the bit psychedelic numbers. The longest of these is "Crystalline Light" at 9:32, you might have already heard this hypnotic psych folk piece on my Astral Visions Mixcloud Show #84. Another highlight for me is the 8-minute Roy Montgomery cover that takes you to places and has a rather chaotic and heady ending. I also especially enjoy the bit mystical and psychy "Unikeko" as well as the last, experimental spoken-word piece "Jabberwocky Recital". The more standard folk pieces are okay too, so I'd like to recommend this CD release to all lovers of a bit more challenging and psychedelic folk music.

tiistai 19. maaliskuuta 2019

Banj o))) - S/T EP

Hulina Records (hulina-018)

Okay, now this is something different... Three guys in Finland playing Sunn o))) styled experimental, distorted metal drone with banjos! In addition, the two, long tracks "Oh Death" and "Boil Them Cabbage Down" are originally both old traditional American folk songs but here butchered almost beyond recognition! Somebody might at first think that this is but a bad joke, but it actually works and I guess the guys have actually been (rather) serious about it...

The macabre vocals of "Oh Death" of course go hand in hand with the dark, low-tuned and distorted banjo drone, they really are a perfect match. "Boil Them Cabbage Down" was originally associated with African slaves brought from Niger and it maybe has even a bit more avant-garde vibe in this context. But hey, the slaves also made some very doomy and gloomy music so I can easily see the reason to use this one here too! I don't actually see any problem with Sunn o))) themselves playing either one of these songs either. Anyway, you can listen to both of these tracks on the Hulina Bandcamp site and make your own mind, I'm still sort of confused... The 25-minute EP is available on limited CD and cassette.

lauantai 16. maaliskuuta 2019

Astral Visions Mixclooud Show #86 online

Astral Visions Mixcloud Show #86 now online with cool tracks by Moon Goose, The Janitors​, 3rd Ear Experience with Dr. Space, Los Mundos, Jupiter​, Sonora Sunrise, Kungens Män​, Minami Deutsch & Damo Suzuki, Lamp of the Universe, Waste of Space Orchestra, Acid Mothers Temple and the Mealtin Paraiso U.F.O., Wasted Cathedral, The Spacious Mind & Organik. Close your eyes and enjoy the ride!

Electric Crayon Set - Laughing in the Clouds

Psychotron Records (PR1009)

Laughing in the Clouds is the third album by Pori, Finland based indie/mod/psych pop/rock band The Electric Crayon Set. I have reviewed their two first, CD-only releases in my previous net zine Psychotropic Zone (not online anymore, sorry). The band is led by guitarist/singer Timo Pääkkö (ex-Penniless People of Bulgaria and Kinsky, also in Love Messengers etc.) and other members are Seppo Tyni: bass, Timo Lilja: drums. Timo's daughter Vilma Pääkkö is singing georgiously on one track and there are also some other guest musicians on board. This time the album is released only on vinyl, limited to just 300 copies.

As always, the music is a sort of mix of 60s mod/psych and 90s indie pop. The album has eleven rather short songs beginning with the happy and up-tempo "Pete Is Laughing in the Clouds". "Dreams of the Rain" is slower and includes some cool vocals and guitar work bringing to mind The Bevis Frond a bit. Sung by Vilma who really has a nice, clear and professional sounding voice, "Calling On The Cards" is a pretty ballad with some keyboard orchestration. Nice! The faster "Ignis Fatuus" rocks out again, and I gotta say that I also really like Timo's voice. Great harmonies on this one, one of the highlights. "Where We Are?" is slower stuff again, a sort of bluesy number with some acoustic guitar as well. "Isthisthewaythatyoufeelthatyouwantmetofeel?" starts of with some psychedelic sound effects and then the fast, cheerful pop beat begins. "Back To The Spaceage" is an interesting progressive pop composition with maybe some ELO or BÖC vibes. "Music to Watch Accrington Stanley by" is rather cool and original as well, I like it. The emotional and atmospheric "After The Show" is next and has a bit weird, sort of jazz-rock-fusion or Zappa kind of twist also including some spoken word. The album's longest track "Moonlit Graveyard, Pt. 1 & 2" ends it with melancholic but beautiful vibes, just wonderful. I like this album since it is at the same time pretty easy to listen to but also includes more clever twists and turns that you at first can realise. Progressive pop, maybe? I think the highly limited edition is almost sold-out already so be fast if you want one!

perjantai 15. maaliskuuta 2019

Sounds Of New Soma ‎– Zwischen / Durch

Tonzonen Records ‎(TON050)

Zwischen / Durch is the latest release by German cosmic ambient / electronic krautrock duo Sounds Of New Soma (SONS). In a way, this can be considered as an "in-between-work" since it was originally recorded in the process of preparing for the next masterpiece and not intended for release. Anyway, these two, long tracks were so great in their own right that they deserved, and needed, to be released on their own right. The vinyl release is also even much more limited than before: just 100 "standard" copies and two different special versions both limited to 50 (of which the wooden box edition is still "under construction" I think). Then there is always a CD edition for those who missed out!

Anyway, let's get into the music. Personally, I don't in any way get the vibe that I'm listening to a demo recording or anything like that. The production quality matches the high standards of their previous releases, no worries. It's even possible that without any stress of how the end result might sound to the public the guys have been more at ease and so also more creative and free. On side A, "Zwischen" features a guest performance by their friend Armin Schopper on pretty light percussion. Other than that, the very ambeint track flows in space without much rhythm or clear stucture. Like usual, you can make out some hazy guitar, synthsizers, electronics and psychedelic effects. I love the floating, out-of-body experience this track gives me! "Durch" on side B starts off with some manipulated human voice saying he title again and again, and then the "kosmische musik" begins in a rather Berlin-school mode. Simple, but sort of sinister sequences penetrate your consciousness and soon you also hear some dreamy, laid-back guitar. Later on the track gets more guitar-oriented but in a trancey way, then it's pure organ drone and then there's more sequencers again. It has an experimental, free-floating vibe to it and I'm enjoying the ride! If you are a fan of this kind of music and a vinyl collector I'd say you have to act fast to secure your copy. This is a future super rarity and Holy Grail!

Jupiter - Iosomnia


Iosomnia is the third album by Helsinki-based progressive heavy stoner/psych rock trio Jupiter. It follows the debut album Your Eccentric State Of Mind (CD only, 2014) and the second album Interstellar Chronodive (LP and tape, 2015). You can check my review of the previous one over here. The band has played live frequently and progressed a lot during the past years. Although you can still say it's the same band and hear some of the influences their style has matured to something of their own by now. At least for me it's pretty damn hard to name much bands that they sound like, but there are still some Kingston Wall vibes as well as similarities to some of the more progressive stoner rock acts like Causa Sui or Colour Haze. It all originates from the 60s and 70s, of course.

The new album was released on vinyl but the package also includes all the same music on CD in a clear plastic wallet. That's the way to release an album if you ask me! There are only four, long tracks that have a lot of different kind of stuff going on, so I guess it's safe to say that this is progressive rock. Some of it is still rather heavy, but not really metal in my opinion, more like stoner hard rock or something. Okay, the blast-beat part towards the end of the last track "Return to Zero" is metal I guess... The guys can now play and sing even better than before and they have also grown as song writers. The album sounds fantastic, as well, so it's very well produced. Even though there's so much different parts and vibes in one song it all flows easily through somehow making the album a very enjoyable experience as a whole. There are also some jazzy vibes in there, especially on the almost instrumental "Abyss Swallowed the Moon". The highlight for me still maybe is the bit esoteric "Quantic Being". After 40 minutes you realise you could have taken some more at the same setting! Luckily you can always play the album again and find something new every time. Check it out!

Sonora Sunrise - The Route Through the Canyon

Trail Records (TR-021)

Sonora Sunrise is a new band from Altai in Russia. The ancient shamanic traditions and other-worldly vibrations of this mystical, spiritual place of deserts and mountains is clearly mediated through the band's psychedelic, atmospheric, mostly instrumental music. They have elements of calming ambient, space rock, psychedelic rock and even stoner rock. The main tracks were mostly improvised live in 2016 and more guitars, synths, samples etc. were added later on to a stunning effect.

The album's intro "Ancient Stones (Sundown)"
has some female vocals and sets the listener in a suitable trance mode. The album's longest, 11-minute "Welcome to the Sandland" starts off with a short spoken world sample and then the wonderful journey begins, at first gently and later on also getting more intense. This is really trippy, floating and heady stuff, I love it! "Unexpected Trip" has cool synth lines and a groovy beat, very nice. This is one of the most progressive pieces on the album. "Poison" is a more guitar-oriented jam but there are some spacey synthesizers in there too. "Ancient Stones ( Uprise Of Jupiter)" is a short ambient intro and then, starting in a very calm manner and featuring loose female vocals, "Canyon" builds up towards the end with some soaring lead guitar etc. Beginning with a sound of someone lighting up a joint and taking a deep toke, "Millions of Snakes" is the album's heaviest piece and comes very close to some of the psychedelic stoner rock bands. Later on it takes a turn into Ship of Fools styled adventurous space rock. Cool! "Roadside Picnic" is a nice, more positive instrumental that somehow brings to mind King Black Acid. The dark, very mysterious sounding outro is called "Ancient Stones (Planetary Standoff" and leaves the listener in a weird haze. In summary, The Route Through the Canyon is a route you really should take if you are into atmospheric, spiritual and spacey psych rock. It's great to notice that the desert rock movement is alive also in Russia and has it's own, shamanistic vibe!

keskiviikko 13. maaliskuuta 2019

Dead Witches ‎- The Final Exorcism

Heavy Psych Sounds (HPS091)

Dead Witches is a heavy occult/stoner/doom metal band founded by ex-Electric Wizard drummer Mark Greening (also in Ramesses and With The Dead). This is their second album following the 2017 debut Ouija with partly different line-up. This is definitely for the fans of early, hazy & druggy Sabbath-worshipping Electric Wizard. Long, slow & brain-melting songs with fuzzed-out, heavy stoner riffs and haunting (female) vocals with ghastly horror lyrics, powerful drumming & sleazy, swampy sound and smoke-filled vibes. You know the drill!

After the short intro "There’s Someone There" the crushingly heavy, doomy & stoned "The Final Exorcism" forces you to close your eyes and just nod your head to the beat. I am spellbound immediately. "Goddess of the Night" follows the same path pouring into your head with slow, heavy & doomy riffs. There's also some cool solo guitar work and organ later on. Very dark stuff! The shorter, melancholic, less heavy "When Do the Dead See the Sun" is some kind of ghostly, psychedelic ballad for the dead and the following "The Church by the Sea" is almost exactly like from the couple of first Electric Wizard albums. Great, Iommi-like riffs on this one! On "Lay, Demon" the band gets even more into doom metal, very gloomy stuff. I like the part when the track speeds up a bit and rocks out more, very welcome addition after all the slooow, ultra-heavy pounding. The long "Fear the Priest" (Mark really seems to have an insane obsession with the priests, the church and religion...) ends the album in sick, disturbed atmosphere. It's heeavy and crushing to the max and keeps you firmly in its grip until the end. All in all, although maybe not offering much novelties to the genre, The Final Exorcism is definitely one of the finest slabs of heavy, occult/horror themed psychedelic stoner doom metal there is.

torstai 7. maaliskuuta 2019

Moths & Locusts - Come Together Right Now (remixes)

Noiseagonymayhem Records

Moths & Locusts is an original sounding psych/space rock band from Nanaimo, British Columbia, Canada. I fell in love with them after listening to their second album Helios Rising (2016) for a few times. After that, I've been trying to score all their releases, some of which are very limited and hard to get. Their latest outing was a cool flexi disc "Come Together Right Now" that you can only get when you order the latest issue of the excellent Optical Sounds magazine (issue #12). Warmly recommended! What we are dealing with now is a VERY limited (just 100 copies) LP of eight remixes of that track by Rob The Viking & Watson, Mongst & Khufu, Galactic Butterfly, Wide Eyed, King Pong Dub System, and Wasted Cathedral and an alternate mix by Moths & Locusts themselves. If  these names don't say much to you, it might make a bit more sense to add that they include members of other cool, current Canadian psych bands Shooting Guns, Radiation Flowers, The Switching Yard, Moonwood, Heavy Moon, Wide Eyed, Swollen Members, Shearing Pinx, Behaviours, Crotch, and Anunnaki. All these are worth checking out on their own right!

The idea of buying an LP's worth of mixes of  just one track might not feel that appealing to you at first. For me, the fact that it was a Moths & Locust track was enough! Also, I must say that all the remixes are very different so you won't definitely get bored. The opening Rob The Viking & Watson remix is probably the closest to the original, very hypnotic and spacey. "Republic Of Doom remix" is "bent, folded and twisted by M&L" themselves and is mostly focused on the female/male vocals with just minimal backing. Things get spookier and louder towards the end, though... Strange and wonderful! "Siren Of The Moth remix" by  Mongst aka JV_DUB is very ambient and experimental in nature, it's hard to recognize as the same song. "Mothers Of The World Unite" remade by Galactic Butterfly is cool minimal electro and "Moth Heads Unite remix" by Mongst and Khufu maybe closer to trip hop or jungle. Max Frazer's "Wide Eyed remix" starts off in a very tranquil, relaxing way but builds up towards the end. Rather psychedelic vibes... "Dub Together Right Now remix" by King Pong Dub System has a groovy, spacey electronic dub feel and it's one of the highlights for me. Very hallucinogenic... One for the late-night after-parties for sure. "Come Together Right Now (Wasted Cathedral remix)" finishes of the album in cosmic, ambient high. Wow! The album is only sold through the Moths & Locust Bandcamp site and there are still some copies left so be quick!

Øresund Space Collective - Good Planets Are Hard To Find

Space Rock Productions (SRP057)

This is the first vinyl issue of a 2009 studio CD by our favourite psychedelic space rock improvisers Øresund Space Collective. This was a sort of transformative period for the band as they incorporated sitar and some other new elements and players to their sound. On this limited 2LP, two of the tracks (the first and the last) are now longer than on the original CD, but otherwise the music is the same, so I will just quote my original review here below...

Now the instrumentation also includes sitar for the first time and it's played by Siena Root's KG who also plays some guitar and Hammond. The familiar synth player Ola is not involved on this disc, but Dr. Space and Mogens make sure that there are enough of those psychedelic space sounds in there. In addition to KG, the guitar is only played by Tobias, so the sitar tracks don't have that much guitar. As always, the music on this album was recorded live with just one take and fully improvised, and then they have picked the best pieces from the recordings to be used later on.

The title track ”Good Planets Are Hard to Find” is an amazing sitar jam that's totally new for the band. They have given lots of space for the great sitar playing and other elements are mostly just bass, light drums and delicate guitar. Apart from the occasional space sounds there are no synthesizers or keyboards. Towards the end the going gets a bit more energetic, and the very end gets you in trance... Excellent stuff! ”Space Fountain” is a mid-tempo acid rock jam, that also has some organ sounds and a superb synth solo in the end. There's also plenty of great guitar playing and space sounds. ”Orbital Elevator” is a really groovy, electric, up-beat and very psychedelic piece, that rocks very well. This sort of reminds me of Ozric Tentacles. Space rock, baby! The more peaceful, celestial part in the middle is pure ecstasy. Some of the best stuff on the album, and we will start to see those good planets by now for sure...

The Pretty slow ”Pp746-3” includes for example great synth melodies and organ sounds. At around the four-minute-marker the going starts to get more powerful and we can hear some hypnotic rocking. The percussion work offers a nice extra feel during the guitar solo. It's also very nice that the boys have been brave enough to incorporate some more chord variation. Later on there is a swinging ¾ time signature going on. The funnily entitled ”My Heel Has a Beard” is the album's shortest, only six minutes and something long hallucinatory jam that doesn't necessarily take you anywhere but what matters here is the trip in itself. The Eastern sitar stuff continues on the last, almost 20-minute (now 23, Edit.) long piece called ”MSTTS”. Just like on the opener, also here the sitar gets lots of room, but there is still some more guitar on this one, especially towards the end. The track also includes percussion. The going gets more intense and those cosmic space sounds that Dr. Space was first let to mess with at Dark Sun's rehearsal place ten (now 20, Edit.) years ago are all over the place... This is a very strong and successful ending for this OSC album that I'd dare to say is their best in many ways. 

Okay, now back to present time... This new 2LP vinyl edition is available on three different coloured, very limited editions so act fast or loose the opportunity for ever... There are rumors that OSC will be performing in Finland again later this year, so keep on checking out this blog for details when we have them!

tiistai 5. maaliskuuta 2019

3rd Ear Experience with Dr. Space - Ear To Space

Space Rock Productions (SRP056)

3rd Ear Experience is a great, mostly instrumental psychedelic space rock jam band from the States. I was first introduced to them through their album Incredible Good Fortune that I reviewed in 2014 and have been buying all their albums since. This time we've got a collaboration album with Dr. Space from OSC on synths so things get even better! Three of the tracks were first recorded by the band and then sent to Dr. Space to add his improvisation, two were started by him and then sent to the band to fill their parts. Interesting recording method!

"Screams of Eagle Bone" starts up the party with energetic, steady space rocking. I love the tight combination of drums, bass, guitars and tons of astral analogue space effects! There is a softer spot in the middle, though. "Anam Cara" has a cool, groovy and ethnic vibe and also some Arabic sounding chanting. Tons of space sounds again as well! Things get very dreamy and laid-back on the journey and then we get some killer heavy guitar soloing that blows my mind. Lots of organ/keyboards on this one too. Great! "Dreams of the Caterpillar" is the longest of the three side-long tracks at 22:13. After the long spacey synth intro the track slowly starts to build up. This one has a trancey, sort of electronic feel to it and I enjoy it very much. On side D we've got two a bit shorter pieces (well, 9:37 and 6:04 but anyway...). "Coin in the Desert" has a dreamy ambient vibe at first and then sounds a bit like the Ozrics in their more hypnotic mode. I really enjoy the cool, groovy percussion of this one. Reminds me of Africa, very nice. "Sue's Dream World" is pure weird spacey synth soundscapes by Dr. Space with some peaceful jamming by the band. Very trippy and up-lifting! All in all, this an amazing album of psychedelic space rock with some ethnic vibes to boost and will for sure appeal to all lovers of cosmic music in general. Available on two different limited 2LP editions as well as on limited CD! Sorry, I just can't find any sound samples at the moment, but you know you'll need this.

Organik - S/T

Space Rock Productions (SPR058)

Organik is a new Danish instrumental psych rock trio. When I put this promo CD-R on I was immediately reminded of Texas psych legends Liquid Sound Company, but later on also bands like Monkey 3, My Sleeping Karma and Glowsun just like the promo sheet says. Also, bands like Naam and Blaak Heet come to mind, so there are also some heavy stoner and space rock elements. In addition to the basic guitar/drums/bass tracks there are lots of spacey effects, percussion and some guests on spoken word, didgeridoo and keyboards.

There are three long tracks on the LP. "Black Desert" evokes the dreamy desert acid psych vibes of Liquid Sound Company, but during the last two minutes the going gets very intense and heavy, almost metallic. Great tune! "Soul Manure" starts off in a hazy, atmospheric manner and has keyboards as well as nice little psychy sound effects and a tribal percussion pattern. Before the three-minute-marker there is a strange, progressive part and then the heavy stoner rocking begins. Later it gets more tranquil and hypnotic again, nice. On side B we first got the albums longest (13:08) "Liquid Embrace". It has a weird, dark almost jazzy experimental feel to it, sort of like Primus. This must be the most progressive piece on the album and has lots of different stuff in it. I enjoy most of it. "Caged" finishes off the album with beautiful, peaceful and almost post-rock like soundscapes. There is also some cool spoken word in Danish by a rapper called MC Einar and it works. The LP is already in stock at Sapphire Records and available on black (140 copies) and pink (170 copies) vinyl.

sunnuntai 3. maaliskuuta 2019

Moon Goose - Source Code

Fruits de Mer Records (strange fish sixteen)

One of the things I love about Fruits de Mer Records is that they often release stuff by bands and artists I have never heard about. One of the latest, as well as the best ones is Moon Goose from Hay On Wye, U.K. They play driving, instrumental space/kraut/psych rock and have been doing it for a few years now. Before this limited debut 2LP that also includes the album on CD the band has released a couple of sold-out EP's. They have also been included on a Fruits de Mer members club compilation CD and their summer festival goodie-back. Anyway, let's get to the album now...

There are 12 tracks on the album, all in between 3:18 and 8:45 in length. The opener "Second Life" has a motorik krautrock vibe and brings to mind Vert:x. Guitar-driven, energetic kraut/space rock with a little punky touch, perfect. "Knifeless Skinning" is bit more atmospheric and beautiful but at least as hypnotic track that gets more intense and out-there in the middle for a while. Some shoegaze vibes in this one as well. "Le Comte" is a groovier piece that I also like a lot. "The Mysterious Coffins of Arthur's Seat" is one of my favourites and has a weird, mystical mood. Something that the Lumerians might have come up with. Then it's time for some space surf with "Goldfish in a Bag" and it's not a bad one either. Nice to hear some great organ playing in there as well. The longest track "Trains" comes next and is a pretty weird, trippy and experimental piece with some cool synth stuff... It starts to rock out later on, just wait and see! "Joey Gets a Candle (Swayze Meld)" has a more electronic feel and it's another winner. "Carnage" has an experimental intro and then we get some cool garage/space rocking. Then it's time to chill out a trip with "Dark Shit" that also includes narration in Spanish. Things get pretty intense and heavy along the way, though... "Garway Witch Trial" is a weird one too, but very enjoyable. The hard rocking "Parameter 5" is next and the album is finished with the eight-minute "Fist Fight at the Bingo" that puts a smile on your face and makes you want to jump up and down like a maniac.

It was quite a challenge to release a 2LP as a debut album since in 74 minutes there are lots of possibilities to screw up but somehow Moon Goose have pulled off to the full. There are no tracks that I don't fully enjoy and there is enough variation to keep a psych fan interested for the full duration. I have a feeling that Source Code will be one of my favourite albums released in 2019. Pre-order now and you'll get this masterpiece sometime next month.

tiistai 26. helmikuuta 2019

Hotlist February 2019

This is the hot stuff at Astral Zone HQ at the moment:

Maat Lander ‎– Seasons Of Space • Book #2
Snakes Don't Belong In Alaska S/T
King Diamond ‎– Songs For The Dead Live
Ed Wynne ‎– Shimmer Into Nature
The Spacelords ‎– On Stage
Mansion ‎– First Death of The Lutheran
Hexvessel ‎– All Tree
Acid Mothers Temple & The Melting Paraiso U.F.O. / The Observatory ‎– Trails To The Cosmic Vibrations
The Honey Pot Bewildered Jane
Moths & Locusts - Come Together Right Now 7" flexi


tiistai 19. helmikuuta 2019

The Spacelords - On Stage

Tonzonen Records (TON 055)

This German psychedelic space rock trio just keeps on getting better and better... This marvellous sounding double LP (the CD version was withdrawn due to slight mastering error) is their second live album and oh boy the band is on fire. I have to say that on their first releases (2010-2013) the band was possibly still finding their own way to make psychedelic music but since Synapse in 2014 and especially since Akee Kazmaier replaced the previous bass player Klaus Werz after that the band have really found the right spot. At the moment they are without a doubt one of the best instrumental psych/space rock trios in Germany, if not in Europe or even the world.

Their drummer Marcus also used to play in another superb German psych rock trio Electric Moon and there are some similarities with these groups for sure. Both play trippy, spacey, often rather heavy but as often also dreamy instrumental rock where effects also have an important role. While a big part of Electric Moon's lengthy tracks are very hypnotic The Spacelords might have some more melody and progression, but it still varies. Electric Moon is mostly instrumental, but The Spacelords don't have any vocals at all. Both bands jam a lot, but Electric Moon plays more pure improvisational stuff while The Spacelords have more structured numbers, also on live gigs like this one.

On Stage was recorded at a privat event called Spaceparty in a big garden, more like a park, that was full of amazing plants, art and lights. Unfortunately there are no pics of the actual event, so all the pics in the cover art were taken somewhere else. Anyway, the spirit of this magical garden is well documented in the playing of this very talented and experienced trio. They play with such a vibe and conviction that you almost feel like you were part of the audience while listening to this album. The live recordings have not been overdubbed or anything, so what you hear is exactly as it happened. The recording/mixing/mastering job by Matt Korr is perfect, and even the gatefold vinyl cover is amazingly well done. The six long tracks on the album include renditions of studio tracks from the couple of latest albums Liquid Sun and Water Planet plus two new tracks that I had not heard before. The music of The Spacelords makes me want to just close my eyes and journey to the stars in my mind. It's pretty easy with sounds of this caliber! Do yourself a favour and check this band out if you haven't already. The more limited coloured version (only 100 copies) of On Stage was sold-out on preorder but you might still be able to score the black edition limited to 400 copies. The official release date is apparently 22.2. and I can't find any videos or even sound clips online at the moment.

Edit: I just heard that a repress is coming up!

The Spacious Mind - The No. 4 Or 5 Gravy Band

Essence Music

Oh joy! Soon after the compilation CD The Drifter put out last year by Trail Records in the U.S. there is a new studio LP by one of my favourites The Spacious Mind. These psych/spacerock/acid folk freaks from the remote Northern forests of Sweden have been pushing their own brand of euphoric, mind-melting psychedelia to the man since the early 90s. If you count also all the limited live etc. editions, The No. 4 Or 5 Gravy Band is actually already the 15th album by the band, and that's not counting the 10" or the compilation CD. The album will be released as three very limited editions on LP only (at least at the moment). The special edition is limited to just 99 copies and comes with a bonus disc, hand-made cover etc. so that's definitely the one to get if you can afford it. The black and white vinyl editions are both limited to 100 copies and reasonably priced.

So, what do we get this time? TSM are famous for long tracks, and the tendency continues. There are two tracks on side A and just one on B. The dreamy, beutiful 13-minute title track "The Cinnamon Tree" begins our journey. And what a journey it is! I get some early 70s Pink Floyd vibes at the beginning. The tranquil, druggy vocals join in somewhere before the five-minute-marker. The track speeds up and gets a bit more intense during the five last minutes with added percussion, more guitar etc. but still stays rather laid-back and spacey. I also love the melancholic, folky melody at the end, amazing! "You Don't Know It But You Are" presents the band in their more experimental mode with all kinds of percussive kling-klang and weird sounds finished with an ambient drone. You need to be "in the zone" to really appreciate this I guess. Play it load and see where it takes you! On the B side, "Creekin' At The Goose" explodes into heavy, cacophonic maelstorm right away. Before two minutes have passed things cool down a bit and a slow beat begins. Drums, keyboards, bass and electric guitars create a hypnotic, trippy web of sound that just sucks you in. You feel your mind melting, little by little, but you just couldn't be happier about it... The fuzz guitar solo is perfect for the mood. This goes on for several minutes and it is unsure if your friends will recognize you anymore... After ten minutes the track finally gets faster and groovier and starts to really rock out. You have arrived into a totally different, strange and wonderful universe and that's exactly the point of this kind of music. To take you to places you couldn't possibly reach without the sonic assistance. The Spacious Mind still is one of the best tickets for this kind of ride. Try it!

tiistai 12. helmikuuta 2019



London, Brussel and Deventer will be drenched into the fuzz this February!

HEAVY PSYCH SOUNDS RECORDS & BOOKING is proud to kick off further events of their Heavy Psych Sounds Fest-series, which celebrated its latest edition just in November 2018 in Innsbruck, Austria. The Italian cult & fuzz rock label, in cooperation with Poison For Souls, invited high class acts such as BRANT BJORK, GIÖBIA, MOTHER'S CAKE, BELZEBONG & many more, to turn the capitol of Tyrol into a psychedelic rock wonderland! Due to the massive success and participation of the heavy rock scene with fans from all over Europe who made the fest so special, HEAVY PSYCH SOUNDS is getting ready to expand and will be running the highly acclaimed events also in LONDON (The Borderline), BRUSSEL (Magasin4) as well as in DEVENTER (Burgerweeshuis) between February 22nd - 24th 2019!

Beside killer acts such as BLACK RAINBOWS, GIÖBIA, DEADSMOKE and many more, the London date will also see the release show of DEAD WITCHES (feat. Electric Wizard's co-founding member Mark Greening) to celebrate their sophomore album 'The Final Exorcism! Expect heavy as hell shows from all bands, the finest and almighty riffs, and of course lots of cool merch at the Heavy Psych Sounds booth. Be quick to purchase some of the last available tickets, as the exciting band line-ups look as follows:

London (UK) Official event // TICKETS
Brussel (BE) Official event // TICKETS
Deventer (NL) Official event // TICKETS

Mona Miluski / ALL NOIR /

keskiviikko 6. helmikuuta 2019

Heavy Moon - Infinity (2007-2018)

Clostridium Records (CRCD0016)

Heavy Moon is a psychedelic space rock project by Jacob Rehlinger from Toronto, Canada. He has also released different kinds of music as Moonwood, King Pong Dub System, Spume and under his own name, mostly on Canadian Arachnidiscs label. This German compilation CD, however, is the first occasion I've heard about him. As the title suggests, this is a sort of "best of" compilation of stuff released on different albums that originally came out 2007-2018. There is also one exclusive track on the CD.

I've got to say I really enjoy Heavy Moon's take on instrumental, psychedelic space rock. Even though everything is played by Mr. Rehlinger himself (I guess), the music has a proper band vibe. I think at least some of the music is based on jams and improvisation, but there are also tracks that are clearly more delicately composed. The overall vibe is rather cosmic and the sound quality is great, so you don't have to be afraid to hear muddy and distorted bedroom four-track tapes. I like the play list on this compilation since there's a good balance in between hard rocking Hawkwind-like tracks and more peaceful, dreamy and mellow pieces that also have have some Pink Floyd vibes for example. Sometimes I'm also a bit reminded of Vibravoid or Electric Orange, but the sound and vibe is still different somehow. Some of the coolest track titles include "Captain Nebulous", "Orbital Drift", "Black Eagle Nebula", "Astrocosm" and the exclusive track "Dieter Visits The Dream Dimension". Great use of electric guitar, synths and organ as well as bass and drums. I wish that this almost 80-minute blast of brain-melting spacey acid rock would also be released on double vinyl but right now this is your best change to get a ticket to outer space.

Uleåborg Festival Of Psychedelia 2019 artists revealed!

The fifth Uleåborg Festival Of Psychedelia (UFOP will take place in Oulu on 12.-13.7.2019. These are the bands/artists:

Electric Moon (GER)
Yuri Gagarin (SWE)
Mara Balls
Tuomas Henrikin Jeesuksen Kristuksen Bändi (THJKB)
Jess By The Lake
Kannabinõid (EST)
The Aeon
Oulun Ylioppilasteatteri ry
Maan Tomu
Meteor Vortex
Lasse Tapio Junnila
Käki / Junkyard Shaman
Kadonnut Manner
Jussi Alaraasakka