Thursday, February 20, 2020

Hooffoot-The lights in the aisle will guide You (Paura Di Niete PDN002)

Hooffoot is a Swedish Prog band from Malmö. Two of the members (guitar and bass) have played in my band, Øresund Space Collective. This is their 2nd record and like the first, all recorded analog and with amazing sound production. The album features 4 long instrumental tracks. The band is primarily guitar, bass, drums and keyboards but they have 5 guests as well to compliment things and they actually play quite a major role on some of the tracks.  Side A starts off with the 13min ttitle track which starts with a short drum solo. A nice melody and some dual harmonies from the guitar and keyboards in the first section. A major change occurs about 4mins in with a shift in the feel of the music with a more driving bass line and some violin by Samuel Lundström. It gets really heavy and intense as well. Wow.. what a song!

The next two tracks bring a bit of jazzy inspiration in with the addition of Göran Abelli on trombone and Ida Karlsson on saxophone. Track 2, Pablo Octavio- 1st Departure starts very dreamy with some Fender Rhodes piano and a spacey vibe. The horns enter in as the bass line starts to change the mood.  There are a lot of different elements to this with some great guitar and love the way the wah guitar matched with the horns. Brilliant and then they quickly switch gears to something more complex with short solos by everyone and different keyboards here and there. Then a trombone solo, sax solo, and that damn killer bass line. Wow…

Side B starts with Pablo Octavio- 7th Sea.  This starts off fairly traditional but then is more rocking with some more incredible bass lines. Pär is just mindblowing. Wow…  Lots of great guitar playing on this track. I should also point out they have a great drummer as well. All the musicians play at a super high level. Fantastic.  The 14min Krematorium (Arrival for Autocrats) is the last track.  The keyboard and bass follow each other in a cool way as the trumpet plays an interesting role.  This is good old Italian movie soundtrack music from the 70s.. Love it..  What a brilliant album. I get into it a different way each time I hear it.  Please don’t take 5 years to make the next one.. This one was recorded back in 2017, so maybe the next one is already done!! We will see. Great work guys (and one gal) and I love the story behind the cool cover as well.

The Lost Stoned Pandas- Tune In Turn On Get Panda’d (WINKLE 39)

This is more or less a Sendelica album with Chris Purdon (Ex-Space Ritual) on synths and Paul (Ex-Curved Air) on violin as guests.  Each side features a long track and it was recorded on a weekend in July 2019 and reassembled by Colin, Marc (Astralasia) and Pete (Sendelica). The opening track, Track Seven you could have heard already on the very rare lathe cut record (only 50 made!) and this opens this album. Quite trippy stuff with spoken words in different languages as the violin creates a dark mood and nice synth sounds. It makes for a quite psychedelic soundscape.  This lasts for over 18mins. Side 2, Track Four (Noah’s March Mix) starts spaced out with cows, birds, and some nice acoustic guitar and bass. Eventually, the full band comes in with the sax taking the lead. Later the violin and cello play some very beautiful lines while the background music is very spacey and floating.  About 13mins in Pedro lays down a very nice guitar solo. Amazing..  I really love this track. So did the wife! Side 3 is a medley of Track 6, 7, 5.. They are not very imaginative with the song titles, sorry.. Although they do give the strange mix names like Yangtze Basin Mix (Track 5). Anyway, this track starts quite uptempo compared to the other tracks with an almost folk rock like vibe with the fiddle. Very hypnotic. By 6 mins it is quite psychedelic and spaced out with some cool synth parts and sounds. Love the stuff Chris is doing on this album.  Around 16mins the track starts to leave the spaced out place and head to higher ground with a new momentum and a return to the hypnotic place it starts. Very cool stuff. Track 3 is another 21 min track that takes up the entire side 4.  A spoken word, some effected keyboards start things off to twist your mind bit.  This one stays pretty trippy and experimental for a long while with a lot of phasing and effects until 8 mins or so when we go into a more high tempo sort of space rock.  By 11mins, the sampled voice is back and a new direction is taken. Phew…. Great ending.

This is a really cool project/album and I hope they make another one. I really enjoyed this one a lot. For sure one to be on the best of 2020 list!

Timemazine Volume #11

Timemazine is a fantastic full colour magazine about psychedelic rock. The main focus is digging up old folks from obscure 60s bands and interviewing them about what it was like back then and now for them.  Lots of amazing stories from bands that I have never heard of as some are quite obscure and others more famous.  I really enjoyed this issue a lot with interviews with JR Nichols from The beat of the Earth, Roy Blumenfeld from the Blues Project, Dan Norton from Expedition to Earth, and Damian Bell fro Maypole. A long interview with Klaus Esser who played in the early Amon Duul was very interesting.  Also covered are some of the new bands like Atomic Simao, Dury Dava, De Loirans, Dire Wolves….. also lots of contemporary album reviews. My fave article this issue though is the 1968 psych overview. Wow.. so many cool records came out that year. I have to say I have not heard that many of the ones covered though. The magazine comes with a CD compilation packed full of cool music as well as a 7” vinyl edition of the mag. This month it is the Greek Psych band, Crystal Thoughts. You can get a copy at the link below.