Friday, August 31, 2018

Astrodome- II (YaYa Yeah YYYY004)

Astrodome is a four piece instrumental band from Porto, Portugal. I really loved their first record and have been waiting quite a long time for this one arrive. The vinyl is still not out (a long story) but the digital and cassettes are! The album features 6 tracks and was recorded at the northern Portugal studio, Hertzsounds, used by a lot of the PT bands in this scene including 10,000 Rusos. It was mastered by Jonas Munk (Causa Sui). It starts off with Mirage. It has a slow keyboard fade in (by new member Kevin, who also plays guitar) and then the melodic guitars kick in as the track slowly builds.  There is some very nice dual lead guitars with a lot of melodic parts intertwined in a very nice way as the drums and bass keep the momentum going. The track comes down and there is a short keyboard solo with some really nice drumming. The track builds up again as it started. Nice reprise and ending. Great opening track. Secular Fields features about the same tempo but some slide guitar and a really ripping and cool lead solo on this track. I just got transported away on this one. Fantastic. Dawn Gardens Part 1 finishes side A of the tape with a track with beautiful melodies and dynamics from this band. I just love the way the two guitar players interact on the tracks. Some times one balances a more dark theme with a more light one as each track evolves.

Dawn Gardens Part 2 starts side B with another slow fade up with just the guitar and cymbals before the rest of the band kicks in for one of the more heavy numbers on this album but quite short. Sunrite is a quite different mood to start and a slow steady drum and repeated guitar line as a theme slowly develops and then when you think it is going to peak, it dies down and a new guitar riff kicks in a new direction begins. A bit of the stoner rock feel and heavy doomy stuff that was on a few tracks of the first record appears later but the nice organ really compliments it well. Atlas ends this excellent record and a track that reminds e a lot of Causa Sui! One of my faves in 2018, please check it out if you like instrumental music.

About the vinyl, it was supposed to be released on the HeviSike label, like the first record and due out in April. Apparently the records were pressed but the label never approved the artwork and the label owner has either died or just gone crazy. This has put the band in a very bad position as the pre-orders have all had to be refunded now and those that were more than 6 months old, might not be able to as that is the limit with paypal.  Lets hope that it does come out on vinyl but no other label will put it out until this is solved. Sorry guys. Great record and cool band. Nice people as well.  Support this band. I would love to see these guys at Roadburn!

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