Thursday, June 16, 2016

Soft Hearted Scientists-Golden Omens 2CD (The Hip Replacement 009)

Golden Omens is the 7th album by this Cardiff based Welsh band.  I have reviewed some of their material in the past. The album, although only about 60mins of music (in 27 tracks), it is split over two CDs.. not sure why, but that is the way it is. There are a lot of short instrumental tracks that tie the other tracks together. Principal Edwards Magic Theatre style 60s music for the modern ear with lyrics reflecting today and the past! Lots of interesting and short vocal tracks mixed with instrumental ones. The album goes by pretty fast when you listen to it and it has a great sound production. Below is a link for a recent live video of one of the bands rare live performances. None of the tracks from this album are yet available for streaming that I am aware of.

One hundred copies of brand new double CD album “Golden Omens’ plus free A2 poster is available direct from the band from 1st June. Cost is £12 including postage in the UK; £14 outside UK.

Wednesday, June 15, 2016

Ulysses- Law and Order (Black Glove Recordings BGCD002)

This is a fairly new UK band from Bath. They have one full length and EP released prior to this record. The band really wears its influences on their sleeve, so to speak. Borrowing or stealing great ideas from a lot of old bands. Some of it is quite cheesy 60s-early 70s Sweet, The Monkees feel to it and other times just great rock and roll… The title track starts things off and is a pop rock track, quite funny and catchy. Smiling reminds me of Mungo Jerry. Lady has a bit harder guitar riff but returns with another catchy chorus that is very much like the Stones. Track has a nice guitar solo but short. Crazy Horses ride the Snake reminded my wife of Badfinger! Dirty Weekend is a catchy foot stomping, hand clamping track with some slide guitar. A bit Sweet and then an AC/DC vocal at the end (Dirty Deeds done dirty cheap). Mary Jane (not about marijuana) is a lot like the Sweet, especially the chorus parts and the slightly harder guitar riff at times. Song that has to be Sung features Rosalie from Purson on vocals in addition to Luke. It is a more laid back track with acoustic guitar to start but then really rocks out after 2 mins. Typical Scorpio is another short catchy number. Come on this City’s Gone has a more foot tamping tempo and a tiny refrain that reminds of Thin Lizzy and more handclaps! Yellow Sunshine #1 and 2 are next and remind of the late 60s the way that the vocals are sung. Yellow #2 is a funky track but continues the lyrical thread of the previous track despite the musical departure. This is also the only track on the album with a long guitar solo. How Long is the last track on this CD and a more hard rocking track but with some beach boys like choruses A quite varied album with a lot of borrowed elements but pretty fun in the end. Check them out!!!

Indica- Stone Future Hyms CD-R (Tonzonen Records)

With a name like Indica, I would hope the band would play some stoned psychedelic music and they do!! The band is a spacey five piece doom metal act from Australia. This album was released digitally earlier in the year on the bands bandcamp site and other places but will soon be out on vinyl on the Tonzonen label out of Germany. The album features 5 tracks in about 40mins. The opening number Silence is killer a slow doomy one with some spacey vocals and the occasional space sounds/noises to compliment the doomy riff and groove. Inner Mind Arise is a longer track and continues the slow doomy path to oblivion with Craig (noises) being a bit more prominent in the mix on this track. Pure Doom.. OM is a track they released in 2015 on bandcamp. Not sure if this is a rerecorded version or not. A slow and spacey start before the crushing doom kicks in. Reminds me of Arc of Ascent a bit. This track is the first to have any sort of lead guitar and has a cool jammed out part with more guitars and not just riffs and lots of noises from Craig. Cool stuff. Goat of Mendes is a faster track a bit like Sleep at times and then classic doom like Trouble. Slow Burner is the last track and 16mins in length! A nice melodic beginning leads to just drums at 2mins and then a slow doomy build begins with some singing but mostly instrumental. Around 5mins buried in the background is an organ playing. Long slow and doomy to the end... Check it out below. 

The band has another full album on bandcamp. One fan wrote, Sons of Otis…. Not as spaced out as that and more straight forward but still some heavy stuff..

Farflung- 5 (Heavy Psych Sounds HPS040)

Farflung is back with their first full length album in many years after releasing a lot of split LPs with different bands. I have been spinning this one a lot and really dig it.. It is not like the intense heavy space rock of Wound in Eternity but still killer space rock stuff. Pity I missed them on the European tour.
Anyway, the CD starts off quite spacey with the intro to Hive and then kicks into some high energy repetition with the guitar line and vocals repeated over and over until you really want it to stop but the space sounds are what are changing. Proterozoic has a cool groove and flanged out guitar. Reminds me of Chrome! I love the vocal delivery on this track. The end is really spacey. 044MZP is a cool track and features Nik Turner. You hear him the most at the end on the flute. The 27th Sun has a vocal that at times reminded me of Dave Wyndrof (Monster Magnet). Lots of effects on the voice at times making this really psychedelic. Wow. That ends side A. Lupine has a nice groove with a more shouted vocal and some intense drumming and a psyched out guitar solo. See the video below. Being Boiled has some great bass playing and a more punky attitude but the sound is really spaced out.  We are ‘E’ has a reverberating guitar line and “we shine so bright” line repeated over and over at the start with a great synth line before the space rock takes off.
Dismal Jimmy is slower and heavier but with a angry vocal to start and later spaced out. Nice bass again on this one. The Retreat ends this great record. Super cool space rock stuff.

Knall- Alien Funk (Tonzonen Records TON013)

German Krautrock band, Knall are back with a new live CD/LP from the Monsters of Krautrock Festival that was held in W├╝rzberg, Germany in 2015. Interesting line up with two basses but one makes a lot of sound effects. The CD/LP is a bit over 70mins in length and has really good sound quality. This is a hard one to go through song (jam) by song as it is mostly just one long trip with a lot of really cool elements. IT starts with a prologue intro jam of sorts with a great guitar solo and some crazy sound effects that fades out.  Alienfunk starts with a nice groove and very much like CAN and it continues on for 7mins before it starts to change a bit and slow down and move into a new direction with a cool new bass line for about 3 more mins. Great driving music. Gravity is next and starts with some distorted guitar string bending and this one stays slow and freaky in nature throughout the first 10min and then a new direction starts as it picks up pace. Quittengelee starts slowly with some nice delay guitar parts and then turns into a really cool funk jam. Staring at Lines (Maybe referring to the artwork??) is a slow piece that fades out after 9mins. Eightballs is the last track before the Epilogue. Great album….

If you are fans of Knall, krautrock, you will for sure dig this one…. Great sound and grooves and spaced out… The video below is from when they played the same venue in 2014..