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keskiviikko 22. marraskuuta 2023

The Fishheads - Lobster Basque Replica

 Fruits de Mer Records (crustacean 100)

This is the 100th "Crustacean" release  so congratulations seem to be in order! The Fishheads is a crazy project started by Marc Swordfish with other Astralasia members and friends and they have previously released a 7"/CD package on Fruits de Mer (check out my review over here). Anton Barbeau is featured again as well as Icarus Peel. but the legendary Simon House makes his debut in the project! Not sure what he plays though, maybe some violin. This time we'll get an LP plus CD. I'll have to wait for my order from Shiny Beast to be able to say much of the remix CD with one bonus track, since this promo pack only includes a CD-R of the LP, so let's concentrate on that.

The first three songs are early Pink Floyd covers and who can ever get enough of those? Not me, when they are done in such an elegant and wonderful manner, that's for sure. It's great to hear my pal and Astral Magic collaborator Anton Barbeau sing "See Emily Play" and "Set the Controls for the Heart of the Sun", both among my Floyd favorites. Amazing versions too, love the Mellotrons etc.! "Set the..." is as hypnotic and mystical as ever. I guess Icarus sings the other two songs on side A, another great singer or course. "Remember a Day" is a brilliant tune too and ah, so beautiful, and this version is a great homage. Mighty Baby's "Egyptian Tomb" ends the A side of the album in a groovy way. The B side is filled with an over 20-minute "Oops! Something's Coming from Another Planet", what a cool title... It starts of with a theme from West Side Story but then turns into a monstruos jam session like only Sworfish and his friends can achieve. Phew, what a trip... Warmly recommended! 

The Bevis Frond - An Introduction to The Bevis Frond

 Fruits de Mer Records (intro 3)


The Bevis Frond from the UK has been one of my favourite bands for 30 years, so all new releases by Nick Saloman & co. are always a big deal for me! Fruits de Mer Records are celebrating their 15th year of existence this year and launched a new series of introductory compilation releases of some of the most well-known and best artists they have worked with along the years. These are actually CD-R's, so not real CD's and unfortunately no vinyl releases of these exist at all. But these are great way to put together many of the tracks by the artists that have been released on Fruits de Mer albums and singles plus some! This time we also get three previously unreleased Bevis demos which of course make this album a must-have for all Bevis fans out there. But I have to say that even without those this is a one killer compilation!

The album includes 16 tracks in total including six covers and 10 Saloman originals. The longest one is the almost 24-minute guitar freak-out "China" from Sideways compilation, other covers include Sky Saxon song "Creepin' Aroun" and "Glass Onion" by The Beatles.  Besides the three unreleased demos the only ones I did not have before were "Condition Blues" and "Not Until I feel It", both from the rare Friends of the Fish III 7" lathe-cut that was only sold at The 19th Dream of Doctor Sardonicus Festival in Wales this year. The only goddam Bevis Frond single along with the previous Bevis 7" from the 2019 festival I'm missing from my collection... So I'm definitely happy to have the tracks here! Cool, rocking home demos, I love them. I used to be able to get all the Fruits de Mer Records (and The Bevis Frond too) releases but with these festival-only rarities it has been impossible for several years which is sort of sad... Well, on the other hand it is maybe healthy to just realize your collector ambitions can't be fulfilled anymore, maybe it's time to focus on other things! Sorry, I seem to be rambling here... Anyway, this is a great compilation for both die-hard fans and maybe even those new to the sounds of The Bevis Frond so just go and order it! Shiny Beast is your place in the EU, in UK Fruits de Mer still delivers the goods. Oh by the way, if you happen to be in Germany this week, The Bevis Frond plays at Cairo, Würtzburg on Saturday.

maanantai 20. marraskuuta 2023

Sendelica - Man, Myth & Magic

 Fruits de Mer Records (winkle 49)

I bet Welsh psychedelic space rockers Sendelica don't need much introductions here. I have reviewed at least half of their vast output before. Their previous studio album "One Man's Man...", the second in the man themed series was an exception. The reason for that definitely was not that it was not good enough, it was bloody brilliant. I just had this principle not to review stuff that I'm playing on, and I played some synths and keyboards on that one. Well, I also do on this new one, but better write a review this time so they might ask me to collaborate again!

It seems to be a new standard for the band to put extended, longer and longer instrumentals to their albums nowadays. This time they have just four, side-long pieces for the 2LP and CD release. That way there's plenty of time to evolve and psych out, which is great! "Wheel of Fortune" has an ominous tritonus vibe going on since the beginning. At 2:22 the hypnotic rocking begins! What a great, mesmerazing track. The jazzy sax offers some Gong vibes, I think. "Neptune (The Hanged Man)" is more atmospheric at first and you can hear a lot of my Moog Grandmother on this one. The piece grows gradually into sort of krautrock and some heavy psych rocking follows later on after the quiet middle part. I just love this track! "Magician Dawn" is a magical and majestic ambient number with some field recordings and makes you fall into a hazy trance-like state. Wonderful! "Tower of Chaos" is another pretty ambient, more experimental piece with some studio wizardry. Quite weird and trippy stuff, actually... All in all, another master piece by Sendalica, and I'm so happy and proud I could join them in the process! There is also a limited edition version of the LP with a bonus disc and a set of tarot cards but that is already sold-out. The standard version with cut-out sleeve, printed inner and poster will be very cool too for sure! The release date seems to be postponed to December now, but this will be worth the wait I tell you...

Jeremy and the Lemon Clocks - Side-by-Side

 Fruits de Mer Records (crustacean 99) 


I'm a bit late with my review since this marvellous double CD-R album was released already last month. It seems to have sold pretty well, since Shiny Beast in Holland is at least temporally all out already. Jeremy is Jeremy Morris from Kalamazoo, Michigan and he operates Jam Records and obviously loves psychedelic music from the 60s. He has released tons of stuff, as solo artists and also with his bands like The Lemon Clocks.

On this release he offers 19 cover versions of classic 60s psych rock songs. On the first disc he extends them with cool jams and even motifs from other pieces etc. which makes them much more interesting than just strict covers. "Green Tambourine" lasts for over 18 minutes with some killer fuzz guitar soloing etc., for example. "Pictures of Matchstickmen" is "only" 5:07, but Norman Greenbaum's "Spirit in the Sky" is even 24 minutes in lenght! Phew.

The second CD has shorter tracks, several of the originally by The Beatles but also two or three by Pink Floyd, The Pretty Things and The Byrds each among other cool songs. All are done in a pretty unique and marvellous style and I really enjoy the whole release. It's a pleasantly trippy and interesting, warmly recommended album as a whole. I love the vocals and musicianship is top-notch. Too bad the era of vinyl boxes seems to be over since this would have made a superb 4LP, but what can you do. Still cool to have this on physical media rather than just downloads! Wonderful stuff.

maanantai 16. lokakuuta 2023

Orbiter - Hollow World

 Argonauta Records (REX2322LP)


Orbiter is a stoner/doom metal band from Helsinki. They have been active for several years and played quite a lot of gigs too. I have previously reviewed their 2009 split 7" with Roadog (over here) and 12" (over here). The quartet has a female singer who fits in just perfectly. For heavy stoner-doom the music is pretty melodic and atmospheric. There are also some other influences, maybe occult/psych rock and even grunge, I guess.

The LP starts off with the slow, crushingly heavy "Silence Breaks". I am hooked! The next song "Beneath" goes in mid-tempo and also has some grunge vibes, maybe it's mainly the vocal melodies and harmonies. Nothing wrong with that, though! "Kolibri" is a short, beautiful instrumenal and then the heavy and moody title track that reminds me of later Black Sabbath stuff finishes off the A side. Great stuff!

Side B kicks off with "Raven Bones". It's another doomy and heavy song that has a cool tom beat in the verse. This reminds me a bit of Finnish occult doom band Mansion, who of course also have a great female singer. Then it's time to go instrumental and bit experimental with "Transmissions". Nice to have some trippy stuff in there as well! "Under Your Spell" is a touching, minimal acoustic number and then the band returns to some seriously heavy riffing with the final song "Last Call". Reminds me of Candlemass a bit, actually. Some 70s Sabbath stuff comes later on...What an excellent ending for a great album!

perjantai 22. syyskuuta 2023

Hanford Flyover - Source

 Friends of the Fish (friends of the fish 73)

Hanford Flyover is one of those bands that I only know thanks to Keith at Fruits de Mer Records... Source is their third album and to be released on CD(r?) and limited lathe-cut LP on FdM's Friends of the Fish sub-label. The LP will include a bit shorter versions of the tracks to fit them all in that format.

Hanford Flyover is a British-American duo formed by Josh and Holly Bowler. Their music has elements of psychedelia, pop and electronic music I got to say I love Holly's clear vocals. They have lots of nice melodies, groovy rhythms and bass patterns, strange sounds effects, nice keyboards and synth pads, lovely guitars and great vibes from the 60s to modern times. There are eight tracks totalling in 46 minutes in length. "Shadows on the Sun", "Shallow  Waters" and "This Is Now" form a great and rather energetic opening trio. Then the slower "Formless" also has some electronica elements although is also reminds me of The Green Pajamas. Wonderful moods and touching lyrics too. "Neutrino" goes deeper into the modern electronic music world  at times but there is also funky guitar and bass work. Maybe it's the vocoder but it sort of reminds me of Air, which is not a bad thing at all. Cool stuff! "Firefly" has a heavy, steady bass line and a nice chorus. "Golden" starts off with peaceful synth soundscapes but gets more intense. Josh does the lead vocals on this one which is a good change for a while. The last piece "Entropy" is another excellent example of modern psych pop/rock. Some wild & fuzzy guitar soloing in there as well! All in all, a very enjoyable album that should get wider recognition in the music business, let's see if the world is ready for Hanford Flyover.

Doctors of Space - The Astral Sessions Vol. 5 - Roadburn Redux

 Self-released (DOSASCD 005)

As most of the readers of this blog probably know, Doctors of Space is a duo formed by two musicians (AND doctors) retired in Portugal: Scott "Dr Space" Heller (Øresund Space Collective etc.) and Martin Weaver (Wicked Lady, Dark). Scott plays synthesizers, Hammond and Mellotron and Martin guitars, drum machines and bass. They have released quite a lot of stuff since 2019 and I have only heard some of it.

This limited CD-R release (100 copies) is the latest in their Astral Sessions series and really cool. This set of tracks was recorded in Martin's home studio for Roadburn Redux in 2021 and broadcasted online. I watched the show and liked it really much since it was heavier and more space ROCK oriented than their often more experimental stuff (that I also enjoy a lot!). So just two guys improvising live, but Martin uses loopers to add more layers of guitar and bass so the sound gets fuller than you'd expect. There are just four instrumental jams on the album but they are long so the album is 74 minutes in lenght. Only three of the tracks were shown on Roadburn Redux, and two of them in edited form, so with buying this CD-R you'll get extra stuff. The bonus track "Don't Trust the AI" (great name, by the way!) is not even available on their Bandcamp site at all. Bacause of the looper the pieces are of course rather repetitive but that is okay with space rock! You'll get lots of spacey synths sounds, hard rocking stoner riffs and driving machine beats that will get you to outer space.

They still have some copies on sale on their Bandcamp site but I'd recommend acting fast if you want one!

torstai 14. syyskuuta 2023

Happenings in the Astral Magic universe

 Hello Earthlings and Aliens!

Quite a lot has happened with Astral Magic since the last posting. We went to Kozfest with my friend Jaire (Octopus Syng, check out the new album feat. me) which was a blast. I met so many friends I had previously only been in contact in virtual world that it was overwhelming! Also several Astral Magic collaborators like Bridget Wishart, Kev Ellis, Peter Bingham, Scott Heller, the list goes on! Check out my videos of most of the great gigs we saw on this YouTube playlist I made.

At the festival I also received the "Cosmic Man" Astral Magic T-shirts that Skullprint had made. Most amazing! I still have some left over here:

There also two other desings only available from All desings by the amazing Andy Wainwright!

I also made a test run of just 25 copies of an Astral Magic patch with the logo. A few still left over here:

 As always, new releases just keep on coming... 

Sacred Mysteries is an album that has been in the works since 2021. I finally got it finished with the artwork. Eetu Pellonpää did three drawings for it and Andy Wainwright designed it all together. The guests are Anton Barbeau on guitars and Taavi Heikkilä (Malady) on saxophones. I describe the album as melodic, progressive and moody space rock with some experimental, ambient touch. Check it out over here and buy on download or limited edition CD.

I also went back to Black Floyd's Analog Studio to record another single with the Kultti-25 boys. Mind Eater / Lurking in the Dark is a real mind-blower and will be released on the next Bandcamp Friday 6.10.! Only 50 copies on 7" lathe-cut, so might sell out fast...

There is also another 7" lathe-cut coming up shortly but can't say more about that yet... It will be announced  next week so keep your mind, eyes and ears open!

I just wrote answers to an interview in Progressive Rock Journal and am in the process of making a track for Institute for Alien Research compilation so a lot happening indeed.

All Peace to You, Galactic Brothers and Sisters

perjantai 8. syyskuuta 2023

The Luck of Eden Hall - An Introduction to The Luck of Eden Hall

 Fruits de Mer Records (intro 2)


I was first introduced to the wonderful world of The Luck or Eden Hall during their second coming in 2008, when I received their fresh CD  Subterrene for review. This Chicago-based had already started  in early 90s releasing a few singles and tapes. I instantly fell in love with their progressive, melodic and innovative take on psychedelic rock. The band kept on releasing great albums, singles and covers for Fruits de Mer Records until the band seemingly went on hiatus in 2017/2018.

This CD(-R?) compiles together 16 songs the band recorded for Fruits de Mer vinyl compilations and singles in between 2010 and 2018. As a die-hard fan of the band and label I of course had all these before... But it is so cool to hear them all here so effortlessly! And if that was not enough, we also get two unreleased tracks to finish the album! "Stop Stop Stop" (Clarke/Hicks/Nash) was recorded for Re-Evolution - FdM Plays The Hollies but never used and "China Girl" (Bowie/Pop) was recorded with the amazing Welsh space rock band Sendelica in 2015! Lucky days... So we have 18 tracks in total and each is really great. The covers include Pink Floyd's "Lucifer Sam", Love's "She Comes in Colours". "SF Sorrow Is Born" by The Pretty Things, "The Crystal Ship" (The Doors) and "Starship Trooper" (Yes), just to mention a few of the highlights! What's really remarkable is the fact that their originals like "Bangalore" and "A Drop in the Ocean" don't really have anything to be shamed of in comparison to the classics. Curvey and the boys have always known how to make catchy, melodic psych pop tunes with a twist.

An Introduction to... is a great way to get into the band and also a very nice opportunity to hear all these glorious trcaks in one go, even if you had most of them on vinyl before. Warmly recommended! If you are in the UK you can order this through the FdM website, for others, try Shiny Beast.


maanantai 4. syyskuuta 2023

Monuments in the Horizon - 2005 - 2015

 Bemböle Cassettes

Monuments in the Horizon was a noisy and fierce, mostly instrumental space/stoner/psych rock band that jammed together for ten years in Helsinki. I think I was involved at least once or twice... Or at least with some of these guys that are mentioned here. Anyway, the personel changed a bit from jam to jam, I think. They also played some gigs.  There is no website or Facebook/Bandcamp site to be found, so the overal info on the band is pretty limited.

Anyway, as far as I know, the band's music has only been featured on a couple of compilations on the mysterious Bemböle Cassettes label and and there was one EP and that's it. All the stuff here SEEMS to be recorded at reahearsal space with pretty primitive equipment but the sound quality is better on some tracks than others. This cool package includes two cassettes full of stuff: 43 tracks in total. Sometimes they bring to mind The Heads, sometimes there are heavier stoner rock vibes but there are also some space effects etc. to add a spacey atmosphere from time to time. We also get some tormented sax etc. Some tracks seem to have actual song structures too so it's not just jamming. Occasionally we also get some screamed and even melodic vocals as well as sort of rap, which is cool. I like the energetic, stoned and heavy vibe of this band, I only wish that the sound quality would be a bit more sophisticated. But if you enjoy the lo-fi esthetic offered on many of The Heads rehearsal jam albums you will for sure like this as well.

I was given this compilation double tape already a couple of years ago so not sure if it is still available, but you can always try Bemböle Cassettes, I guess. Worth the try!



keskiviikko 16. elokuuta 2023

Astral Magic news!



It's been a while since I have posted any Astral Magic news, so a lot to tell again...

Since Am I Dreaming? LP/CD/download  released 5.5.2023 there are three new albums out!


Cosmic Energy Flow was released on CD limited to 100 copies on May 27th. The CD version also includes the 7" single Remember Your Roots / Psychic Resistance as bonus tracks (your only way to get the full version of the A side!). This is proper psychedelic space rock album featuring the late Nik Turner and other UK space/psych rock legends Kev Ellis, Stefan Olesinski and Christina Poupoutsi along with Russian guitarist Ilya Lipkin. Not that many copies left, so please hurry!

Vortex of Eternal Light is a more electronic album that was put together rather fast with Jonathan Segel (guitars, violin) and Shane Beck (spoken word). This was a limited edition CD-R (only 50 home-made), and rather tasty if I may say so myself. Hypnotic, trippy and spacey stuff, also including some proggy elements! Released on my birthday 30th of May...

Experiences in Hyperspace has been a long time in the making. Well, in Astral Magic terms at least. After some alterations the album was finally ready and released again on limited edition CD on July the 7th. We have on board the spaceship Jaire Pätäri (Octopus Syng, sitar), Jonathan Segel (guitars, violin) and a new collaborator Marc Paskvan (spoken word). The one-hour album has a great mix of hard-hitting space rock, electronic stuff, experimental soundscapes, prog and even pop elements. I'm very proud of this one!

The intense release schedule is also planned to continue... The next album Balance of Oblivion will be out this Friday 18.08.! Again, limited CD put together with the amazing Jonathan Segel (guitars, lap steel, mandolin, bouzouki, violin, theremin) and Shane Beck (spoken word). A rather different album in my mind, but probably everyone will compare it to Hawkwind once again...

All cover art on these four albums is by the brilliant Andy Wainwright, I'm so happy I found him from the Cosmos.

What else is new are the three different Astral Magic T-shirts now available from Skull Print in the UK! So thrilled about this. Designed by Andy Wainwright as well.

One of the designs, Cosmic Man, also available form the Astral Magic Bandcamp site in tiny quantities:

 All Peace to You, Galactic Brothers and Sisters!

sunnuntai 2. heinäkuuta 2023

Various Artists - Rekinked: FdM Plays The Kings 8" Lathe-cut EP

 Fruits de Mer Records (Friends of the Fish 68)

The Kinks were of course a very well-known British rock band formed in 1963. I must admit I've never been a big fan, Face to Face being the only album I have. I just thought they were not psych rock, more like r'n'b first and then classic rock, pop or something. An okay band and some cool songs, sure, but nothing to really blow my mind. Sorry about that...

Anyway, coming out at the end of the month is a very limited lathe-cut 8" single with four cover versions of their tunes. I don't even remember hearing the original versions except for the last track. To start off the EP, The Flower Machine makes it Fruits de Mer vinyl debut with "See My Friends". Nice song and very well executed too. Some Indian/Raga flavour in this one, I think. "Do You Remember Walter" is a nice pop song performed here by Bertling / Robertson (Mr. Robertson recently released a great single on FdM). It's cool to hear some added psych elements like backwards guitar and sitar sounds. Crystal Jacqueline & Icarus Peel (from The Honey Pot) play a pretty folk rock song "Shangri-La", an excellent choise for them. Some raga vibes here too. Only song that I actually was familar with before is the straight forward early rock piece "I Need You" that I guess everybody knows. The Tubeheads make their first appearance on a FdM vinyl release and deliver the goods.

All in all, this is a very nice little EP, too bad that only 100 copies were done as lathe-cut, making it quite pricey too. But hey, we're living hard times right now, so I guess a proper pressed vinyl EP was out of the question. If you live in the UK you can still order this from Fruits de Mer, outside of UK Shiny Beast is your only possibility.

tiistai 6. kesäkuuta 2023

Øresund Space Collective - Everyone Is Evil

 Space Rock Productions (SPR080)

Okay, this is the new album by improvisational psych/space rock jam band Øresund Space Collective. I've been following them since their start in 2006 and have most of their releases. Since Dr. Space moved from Denmark to Portugal things have slowed down a little but the band still tours and records albums. This is the first album to come out of recent (September 2022) studio sessions from Dr. Space's new studio, but for sure not the last! Like it always is with jams, sometimes the plot is a bit lost, but when all the band finds the spark and follow the clues of others magic will happen.

The title track is a massive, over 60-min jam that starts out rather slowly and it takes some time to find its form. For the 2LP edition it is divided into three parts. I'm really enjoying myself for most of the ride! Thinks get more progressive and on-your-face on the second part. There is a certain sinister feel about it, maybe that's where the name comes from. Then I get some early 70s Gong vibes which is great. The fourth track is called "Everyone Is Good (Maybe)" and starts with a cool ambient soundspace. It stays very atmospheric and beautiful, and I enjoy it very much. The 2CD version also has two bonus tracks not available on Bandcamp or other digital services. There is also some more experimental stuff in there... The stellar cast of musicians also this time features Luis Simoes (Saturnia) on guitar which is great. Astral Magic fans will love to hear Jonathan Segel play guitar and violin! The great artwork is by David Graham as usual. Check this out!


maanantai 5. kesäkuuta 2023

Le Mur - Keep Your Fear Away from Me


 Keep Your Fear Away from Me is the fourth album by Bochum, Germany-based trio Le Mur. I have previously reviewed their third album that was released  on Clostridium (check it out here). This time the band have produced the album on their own without a label backing, which is just as fine. It's available  both on limited vinyl (300 copies) and CD from the band.

Like before, I have some difficulties in describing the band's music. As a trio, their sound is often rather minimal with just drums, bass and guitar with vocals. There is also some saxophone and the first of the four long tracks called "Praetarium: ...the Past Will Be Perfect" also includes spoken word samples by J. Khrisnamurti giving in a more spiritual vibe. We also get some occasional bird-song etc. on the second track.

The B side opener also has some synth sounds and  is a bit heavier as well. Lots of saxophone in there too. Then it's time for an acoustic part with some more vocals and bird-song and then some synths. J. Khrisnamurti samples also make a come-back! The last track rocks out a bit more which is cool. Still some weird and pretty minimal going towards the end. I don't understand why there is no guitar if there is keyboards or sax, just bass, drums and one lead instrument. To me this keeps the trcacks sounding like demos more than finished songs. But many people like simpler arrangements so maybe that's it. The sound in itself is good, though.

The band says they are inspired by Camel, The Doors, 70s Miles Davis, Sonic Youth, Hawkwind, Ozric Tentacles, Tool, Anathema etc. but I don't really hear any of those echoes here. Perhaps this is just a bit more primitive version, I don't know. Check it out yourself! You can order both the LP and CD for just 20€.


sunnuntai 2. huhtikuuta 2023

nick nicely - Afterworld

 Fruits de Mer Records (crustacean 97)

I've been a nick nicely fan for twenty years now but he started his career already in the beginning of the 80s with two legendary singles, DCT Dreams and Hilly Fields (1892). He has always had an unique style to combine synth pop with deranged psych rock arrangements. He did not release any albums until 2003 when the great Psychotropia compilation was put out on vinyl by Tenth Planet. Another compilation followed in 2011 as well as a brand new tape album Lysergia, and then Fruits of the Mer started to release singles and EP's by him. There were also two new albums, Space of a Second (2014) and Sleep Safari (2017), all great stuff.

Afterworld is an album of vintage demos and outtakes, so it's like in between a compilation and a new studio album. So yes, we do have previously heard tracks like "DCT Dreams" and "Rosemary's Eys", but they do sound different to the previously released versions. Then there are lots of unheard demos and abandoned projects like "Eels", "Gallery" and "Shadows in the Sun" and early versions etc. All in all, it all sounds excellent and very exciting so wether you consider this as a new album or compilation it is really great! It all shows how much time, experimenting, effort and energy nick puts in his music. I just love his sound and vibe, sometimes dreamy and beautiful, sometimes freaky and even mental. There are no dull moments on this album and I'm sure all nicely fans will love it. Even if you have never heard of nick or  his music this is just as fine place to start as any other. Warmly recommended! You can get it from the Fruits de Mer website (UK) or Shiny Beast (EU & the rest of the world).

perjantai 31. maaliskuuta 2023

Albino Rhinö - Return to to Core

 Space Rock Productions (SRP078)

This is the third full-lenght album by Helsinki-based psychedelic stoner/doom metal trio Albino Rhinö. They also have one mini album, one EP and one split EP with Morbid Evils, for all you completists. All worth getting. This time we only have one long track, "Return to the Core", that is split in two parts for the limited vinyl issue (152 x black, 153 x silver). There are also 200 CD copies in digisleeve.

Early 90's Finnish psych/prog/classic rock trio Kingston Wall is having somekind of renaissance (again) with another book and remixed versions of their albums (hell, even online courses on how to play guitar like Petri Walli!). They have had their influence on a lot of great Finnish music since their demise from Amorphis to Hidria Spacefolk and beyond, and that goes for Albinö Rhino as well. At least I'm very much reminded of the KW on the cool 3/4 groove at the beginning with all the acoustic and electric guitars, killer bass lines and tight drum beat, even the deep vocals. To add some more psychedelic levels, Scott Heller aka Dr Space plays some synthesizer effects all around to a great effect. Slowly the track gets heavier, and before the 10-minute-marker also the stoner doom fans will have their heads nodding to the beat. Now this reminds me of Colour Haze or even Sleep or Om or something. Very cool! These lighter and heavier parts continue and you will be on a great trip for 35 min 35 seconds. The sound is really excellent and the art work very well planned too, so what can I say: another very successful release by Albinö Rhino and Space Rock Produstions as well. Get it!

Øresund Space Collective – Live At Roadburn 2010 2CD/DVD

Space Rock Productions (SPR079)

Most die-hard OSC vinyl fans might already have the 2LP version of this great gig at Roadburn 2010 when the volcano in Island erupted... Phew. That will be something to remember, by the way. The gig was also shot on video, but that has not been free for publishing until now. So what a great time to reissue this as a 2CD/DVD including the whole show!

This show has been one of the top ones of all the OSC gigs I've went to. The vibe is just superb, even with a litte smaller jam group than some other times! Just six guys but that is certainly enough with this kinds of virtuosity and emotion. Sometimes the band just flies in the best Gong/Ozrics style and blow your mind, at times they cool down perfectly. The sound as well and picture quality on the discs are super, so I warmly recommend getting one of these rare beauties (200 copies) before they're gone!


maanantai 20. maaliskuuta 2023

Cosmic Cassiopeia - Music for Later Night Listeners

 Not on Label (OSC2022-LS012)

Cosmis Cassiopeia is a new jam project by Dr Space aka Scott Heller. This debut album made together with his previous Alien Planet Trip collaborator Daniel Lars was created in 2021 and already released a year ago but I just recently reveived a copy, so let's just dive deep into space!

Therea are eight reasonable length, instrumental tracks on the CD. You can clearly hear that espcecially the ones started by Scott with synths are very much improvised on the spot. Some of the tracks have more structure and also programmed beats like the excellent "Bear Romber Stromper", some just float in space without much form or rhyhthm. Daniel plays some great solos that give the album a bit more proggy edge. I like it! The programmed drums could have been better constructed for example on "Sweeping Klaus's Patio", though. All in all, a pretty constant package of trippy space rock sounds and beats, worth getting for sure!

perjantai 17. helmikuuta 2023

Dr Space's Alien Planet Trip Vol 6 - Space With Bass II

 Self-released CD (OSC2022-LS011)

This very limited edition CD (100 copies) was already released in January 2022 but I just recently received a copy from Scott "Dr Space" Heller, so here we go. And this kind of space music never gets old... It exists out of time and space! This is the sixth release in the series, obviously, and second with bass on board (you might have figured that out too from the title). The bass players in question are Hasse Horrigmoe (from Norway, anyone still remember the great band Tangle Edge?) that has worked with Scott before on other projects too and William Kopecky (Kopecky, Pär Lindh Project, Spirits Burning, Yeti Rain and Haiku Funeral). William plays on three tracks, Hasse on five. The CD has two bonus tracks, the Digital Bandcamp version only 6. Not sure why, maybe just to get you buy the CD? It's a cool item to have, anyway!

Some of the earlier Dr Space's Alien Planet Trip stuff has been very dark and intense, but this one is (deliberately?) more uplifting and atmospheric. I like it! It does not get you depressed of fucked up, although it is very psychedelic. It just gets you high and spacey. That's the way I prefer my dose of psych! So, the music is of course VERY synthesizer oriented, and ambient in nature. There are only some arpeggios or sequencers to give a little bit of rhythm, even the bass is ofter very experimental and not your standard bass patterns. Cool! Scott uses both analogue and digital synths to a great mix of spacey sounds. All in all, a very enjoyable, strange and spacey experience! The CD seems to still be available, and you can even buy a bundle of Vol 4,5 and 6 for just 20€ plus postage, so that's a good deal! 

maanantai 23. tammikuuta 2023

The next Astral Magic releases!

 Hello Earthlings & Aliens alike!

It's going to be a busy Spring for Astral action... We have already five albums ready and waiting for release. I though it might be a good idea to tell something about all of them already, since people often find my release schedule confucing and insane...which might just be true!

Wonderland CD-R (ASTRAL022), release date 3.2.23

Wonderland is an album with no guitars (except bass guitar), but there are still some rocking stuff on it in addition to the more electronic and experimental stuff. It's just me except Shane Beck does the spoken word on the last track "Seen through the Cosmic Eye". Includes for example "Thunder Rider's Last Flight", a tribute tune I did the next day I heard my old pal Nik Turner had passed away. Only 40 copies on CD-R as well as a digital release, of course.

 Deep Space Expedition CD-R (ASTRAL022.5), release date 17.2.23)

This album is unique since all the sounds were made by me with just analogue synths (Moog Grandmother, Moog Werkstatt, Make Noise O-Coast, Behringer DeepMind 12, Behringer VC340) with just a little improvised human voice on three of the eleven tracks. I realise that this is not perhaps for everyone since the style is pretty experimental and cosmic... So, only 30 copies on CD-R were made. If you dig the earlier albums A Crack in the Fabric of Reality, Transmissions from Outer Space and The Lost Transmissions, this is for you! Very far-out.

The Last Survivors on Planet Earth CD (ASTRAL023), release date 3.3.23

The next in line on the limited edition (100 copies only!) digipack CD series on Astral Magic Music. This is maybe the best so far since there are some killer songs on it and the sound is just superb! Space rock, psych rock, prog, pop, it's all there with just one more experimental piece. Jonathan Segel plays on all the music as well (guitar, electric sitar) and Shane Beck offers his cool spoken word for two of the tracks. Alisa Coral (Space Mirrors) makes her Astral Magic debut playing synth pads & synthi effects on the title track. Only one instrumental on this one and absolutely no fillers!

Mystic Dreams Reversed CD (ASTRAL024), release date 6.4.23

After Apparition's Breath CD Shane kept on sending me more great spoken word pieces so finally I had absolutely no other option except to make another Astral Magic album featuring him! This one started as cosmic, electronic ambient thing with also some prog rock and psych elements. Then I came up with the idea to ask Jonathan to overdub some acoustic instruments to add an acid folk layer to the album. Being such a bad-ass, multi-talented and professional musician as he is, he did a wonderful job very fast! Think of Popol Vuh mating with Klaus Schultze and Ash Ra Temple and you might be close... Master and cover art are ready to go, just waiting for the previous releases to get out of the way first... 

Am I Dreaming? LP/CD (ASTRAL025), release date 5.5.23(?)

Phew, this is a really special case in all aspects... I have made all kinds of psychedelic music with Astral Magic ever since the project started. One of my great musical loves is psych/garage rock & pop of the late 60s and early 70s and this album is definitely influenced by that stuff. You might hear echoes of bands like early Pink Floyd, The Seeds, The Byrds, The Who, The Zombies, The 13th Floor Elevators and more. This has also been a long project (in Astral Magic's terms, of course...) since the earliest songs on it were started at the very beginning of the project in Spring 2020. Also the guest list is pretty stellar: Dr. Koch (Vibravoid, he also planned the cover art in one day!) plays guitar on half of the tracks, Jaire Pätäri (Octopus Syng) on two and Fred Laird and Gregory Curvey both on one. Jay Tausig plays all the drums except for three songs where Perttu Lindberg does the job. There's also some narration on one track by Jasmin Anglén who will be featured on backing vocals on a later album called Strange Sensation...

It has always been clear that this album just had to be released on vinyl and I have offered it to several labels since 2021 to no avail. For years there have been rumours of a vinyl pressing plant starting in Helsinki, and now it finally is reality! Helsingin Levypuristamo Oy has just started and I just had to be one of their earliest customers! 200 copies will be pressed on black vinyl and I will probably also do a very limited CD/CD-R run with one bonus track. The title track was already released on the taster 10" lathe-cut EP A Peak into the Future featuring four of the peak tracks of four future albums. You can check it out here:

Also the track "Let's Take a Ride" has been previously released last year on a very limited lathe-cut single in Ireland, so you can hear that too: