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perjantai 30. syyskuuta 2022

Moksha - S/T 2CD-R

 Self-released (MOK001)


So, why would anybody review a twenty-ear-old limited CD-R reissue of a very rare tape release from the late 80s, one might ask? Well, I'll give you a few reasons. Moksha was an electronic, psychedelic and spacey music project featuring English synthesizer and keyboard player Seaweed before he joined Ozric Tentacles or even the fierce psychedelic freak-out band Thunderdogs. I was lucky to see Thunderdogs when they played with a freak-circus and became a fan immediately, the Ozrics of course have been one of my favourite bands since the early 90s. Not even many of the Ozric Tentacles fans know anhything about Moksha, though, and I feel it's time to change that since this is really good stuff! I just received this double CD-R from Seaweed's partner Claudia (thanks a lot!). It was apparently released in 2002 in a limited edition of just 100 copies, but according to Discogs there was alsa a re-issue (with catalogue number MOK001A). There is very little information about the band or recordings, but the players are Seaweed (Kork Poly 800/Roland JX8P, Korg MS20, EMS Synthi AKS and Roland TR707) and Quiller (Roland D50 and Roland SH101) as well as Gabi (ambient flute). The recordings were made direct to stereo with no overdubs, accoring to a rumour at a London flat of Joie Hinton.

Okay, so how does it sound? There are 13 instrumental tracks heavily influnced by Tangerine Dream and Tim Blake, also the more electronic side of Gong I suppose. I really like the spacey vibe of the album and some of the excellent playing reminds me of Seaweed's later work in the Ozrics as well. Most of the music is pretty ambient and chilled-out in nature, but there are also some faster, more energetic pieces like "Mushroom House". The drum machines are not too prominent, the sequencers and synthesizer sounds are always playing the main role. The sound quality is surprisingly good for an over 30-year-old home/rehearsal space recordings, no problem there. This is very hypnotic, spacey and psychedelic stuff and deserves to be heard by a bigger audience, I think. Maybe is is time for a remastered 2LP version? I would definitely buy it! Very cool stuff. Not sure how to obtain a copy of this CD-R, since Seaweed nor Moksha seem to have any kind of website, so good luck.

tiistai 27. syyskuuta 2022

Custard Flux - Phospherus


Phospherus is the fourth album by Gregory Curvey's (Detroit, Michigan) acoustic, psychedelic progressive rock project Custard Flux. I got to know him around 15 years ago when he started to send the The Luck of Eden Hall albums for review. I just loved them, and still do! Nothing has been heard of The Luck of Eden Hall for five years, that's when the split album with Red Sun was released on VE Recordings in Italy, but I'm happy Curvey is still making music. He has also performed and recorded with the Welsh space rockers Sendelica, among others. I'm also proud to say he has recorded some excellent guitar etc. tracks for my own Astral Magic project too!

Anyway, let's consentrate on Custard Flux now... It's been two years since the previous album Oxygen was released (read my review here) and besides driving his Harley Davidson and doing beautiful renovation work etc. Gregory has also written, recorded and mixed another killer set of new songs. The main idea still is to use mainly acoustic instruments (piano, hapsichord, harmonium, guitars, autoharp, drum kit, percussion) and vocals to make progressive rock music. Electric guitar is only being used for some of the solos. Like before, we have some guest musicians: Vito Greco on guitars and Portuguese guitar, Timothy Prettyman on double bass, Mars Williams on saxophones and another keen Astral Magic collaborator Jay Tausig on flute and backing vocals. Great! Especially the saxophones and Portuguese styled guitar give the album some new angles.

The 80-minute opus has 12 tracks on it. Some are around 10 minutes, some less than 5, but all are excellent. I love the way Curvey is able to use catchy choruses, weird scales and chords, very progressive rhythms, eerie atmospheres and psychedelic vibes and often within just one song! He is just such a talented multi-instrumentalist that I'm left in awe. So, usually you would think that using mostly acoustic instruments would lead to making a more folk oriented album, but this is definitely not the case with Custard Flux, although there are bits of that too in the mix. There is usually a lot of stuff going on in one track, some of it also pretty hectic, but luckily there is also time to chill out and relax. It is pretty hard to think of any other bands or artists that would sound like this, but some elements remind me of The Beatles, King Crimson and some others. There must also also be some more modern influences I can't really point out. This is very unique, interesting and great sounding music, anyway, and warmly recommended for all the adventurous listeners out there! The CD and limited edition (250 copies) LP will both be available iat the end of December, but you can pre-order right away. Just do it!


tiistai 6. syyskuuta 2022

Dark Sun Bandcamp changed into Astral Magic Bandcamp!


I just changed the Dark Sun Bandcamp site I've also been using for Astral Magic to:
This means the old release links to the old site won't work anymore, unfortunately. But you will find everything from the new address. It was time to let Dark Sun go... I still sell that stuff too, of course!

torstai 1. syyskuuta 2022

New Astral Magic album In a Haze released tomorrow!


Time for some Astral Magic news. A new album In a Haze will be released tomorrow on Bandcamp Friday as a limited edition digipack CD. There were only 100 copies made.

This album has Jonathan Segel on guitar and violin again and the cover art is based on a video still image by Piet Koster. Jonathan also mastered the album. Everything else is by Santtu Laakso.

You can buy the CD for 10€ at:

 Also digital download available and you can of course listen to In a Haze on all the digital platforms there are. I hope you'll like it! Check out the album tour video with clips from all the 11 tracks below. Lots of different stuff in there but all trippy and psychedelic I think!

All Peace to You, Galactic Brothers and Sisters...