Bunny Numpkins & The Kill Blow-Up Reaction formed up around 2002. They started as the backing band for a puppet but eventually went on to simply make quirky pop. They are from Oakland CA and have played at the Bunny Jam, The Finch Gallery and clubs including Elbo Room, The Starry Plough and The Stork Club. Good clean fun for all. Good pop fun for all.
Doctors of Space is a new project that features Dr Space from Øresund Space Collective/Black Moon Circle and Dr Martin Weaver of Wicked Lady/Dark fame. Dr Space does the synths, Martin creates the drums, bass and guitars. Futuristic space rock.
Dr Weaver- Electric and Acoustic Guitars, Bass, Drum Programming
Dr Space- Synthesizers, Hammond, Mellotron
Mixing and Mastering at Estúdio Paraíso nas nuvens, Central Portugal.
Nick Storring’s eighth album takes the one-person-orchestra approach for which he is acclaimed and translates it to a single instrument: the piano. Recorded on everything from the innards of an old upright piano to a Disklavier (a computer-controlled acoustic piano) housed at Yamaha’s Toronto offices, and using playing techniques that span conventional to idiosyncratic, Storring conjures a vast and vivid color palette. Music from Wéi was composed for the choreography of his frequent collaborator Yvonne Ng. This layered, multi-tracked score moves fluidly between tender lyrical phrases and driving interlocking figures, and from thick textural swarms to supple transparency. Nick is not afraid of near silence during these relaxed passages. You can almost see the dancers moving gently to the music.
Papir might be the ultimate expression of the Danish creative soul: distinctively modern, deceptively minimalistic, and stylish yet understated. Papir follow their own road map, creating music with little interest in playing to the masses or catering to a specific genre. The band’s output has varied from epic psychedelic guitar meltdowns à la Earthless to sweeping, reverb-drenched soundscapes… Many aspects of Papir’s music seem to have much in common with the sea – be it a willful association by the Copenhagen-based trio or not. Their output moves in waves, sometimes fierce and blustery, sometimes gentle and calming, but always performed with unforced, organic talent.
On bandcamp they say: “A most succinct and descriptive album title Boyle’s Psych-Jazz Collage I is exactly what it advertises. Brilliant cut-and-paste in the spirit of Faust Tapes, layers of reeds drone while percussion skitters across the stereo field. Pure endlessness.” All instruments and voices by Boyle. No effects or backwards masking used in this recording. Wild stuff psych, jazz and noisy stuff. One long track (43:29) fade in and out and have some fun.
Guitarist Gary Boyle was born in India, 1941. In the early sixties he attended the Leeds College of Music in the north of England. Before releasing his solo debut album in 1977, Boyle had played and recorded with many kinds of artists, e.g. Dusty Springfield, Bert Jansch, Keith Tippett and Stomu Yamash’ta, and had founded his own fusion group Isotope in 1973.
El Universo (Eder Ademar) says: “One day I was watching a documentary about the first manned trips to outer space, I remember they were talking about the tests they carried out with Monkeys & Apes and it occurred to me that that could be a great name for a band, at that time I listened to a lot of kraut and space rock and I really wanted to start a new project, I took the guitar I started to make some bases and on that some riffs while I ran the documentary in silence, I started to create the soundtrack of the documentary and then I did the same about a series of the universe, finally the project was not called Monkeys & Apes but I made a song with that name to remember Ham, the first hominid to fly into outer space. All instruments played and recorded by El Universo (Eder Ademar). Space, psych and rock all mixed together.
Steven R. Smith is the man behind projects like Hala Strana, Ulaan Khol, Ulaan Passerine and Ulaan Markhor, but also makes music under his own name. Active since the mid-90s, Smith has recorded a staggering amount of work, and every release is as good as the next. Joining Smith on Spring is Gareth Davis, the Amsterdam-based bass clarinetist and occasional collaborator of Machinefabriek, Merzbow and Elliot Sharp. The restrained interplay between Smith (on guitar, piano, percussion etc.) and Davis create a warmth and intimacy. Relaxed drone like ambience. Recorded at Worstward Studios, Los Angeles, December 2019 – May 2020.
In 2012 Davi Rodriguez de Lima left Brazil to live in Germany. Former drummer from relatively well known Brazilian indie band Ecos Falsos and from experimental punk band Orange Disaster left Brazil to join his girlfriend. The time adapting to a new country, studying in a foreign language and isolation brought not only into two kids into the world, but also his solo debut Fantasma. Davi composed, played, recorded, mixed and mastered the album by himself. “Working alone has its ups and downs. Self-criticism, loneliness and pressure together with freedom, independence and self-awareness. Time becomes a mix between neurosis and patience.“ Those sensations translate to the album concept. Ghosts (fantasmas) are normally lonely beings, lost between worlds and bubbles, expatriated from life, family and friends. “This is exactly what I have been through in the last years – a Brazilian immigrant building a new life in Germany – though with strong ties to Brazil“. Fantasma has eight songs about this ego trip and all the trips between those sensations. It is also trippy in a more psychedelic sense: lots of delays, weird industrial noises, soundscapes and blues-punk. The album was a part of Davi’s Master thesis in sound design and is therefore very experimental in its production concept. Davi says: “The drums, for example, are not real drums, they are actually a self-produced sample-based drumkit that uses foley techniques noises and recordings. Davi says: “I recorded a wide range of sounds, from construction sites to milk cans; when nothing worked, punching a window did the trick“. Instead of a bass, he used a Moog synthesizer and built a tube guitar amp himself to achieve different timbres. “All part of taking risks. A matter of trial and error, of experimenting, failing, trying again and failing better.”
Masana Temples is the fourth album from psychedelic explorers Kikagaku Moyo. Kikagaku Moyo is based in Tokyo, Japan. The band’s experiences traveling through life together, ranging from the months spent on tour to making a pilgrimage to Lisbon to record this album with jazz musician Bruno Pernadas. The band sought out Pernadas out of admiration for his music and in an intentional move to work with a producer who came from a very different background. With Masana Temples, the band wanted to challenge their own concepts of what psychedelic music could be. Elements of both the attentive folk and wild-eyed rocking sides of the band are still intact throughout, but they’re sharper and more defined. Life for a traveling band is a series of constant metamorphoses, with languages, cultures, climates and vibes changing with each new town. Inspecting the harmonies and disparities between these perspectives, the group reflects the emotional impact of their nomadic paths. Every track has a different feel and describing the music as psychedelic is pretty loose. The album artwork is a trip. Very enjoyable.
Foret Lacandone is a jungle with thousand-year-old trees in the state of Chiapas in southern Mexico. Since the 1990s, it has been home to the Zapatista humanist resistance movement, whose desire is to protect the dignity and rights of the Indians. The emblematic figure of this movement is Subcomandante Marcos. Jean-Pierre says: “With the music of the quintet, I evoke a journey at once, uncertain, perilous, magnificent through this inextricable, inhospitable, thorny forest. It ends up clearing up and finally, benevolent, it offers the traveler an opening towards the light that brings hope to emerge regenerated, peaceful, happy. With the music of the quintet, I evoke a journey at once, uncertain, perilous, magnificent through this inextricable, inhospitable, thorny forest. It ends up clearing up and finally, benevolent, it offers the traveler an opening towards the light that brings hope to emerge regenerated, peaceful, happy.” Listen and you can hear the jungle and the journey on every track.
Peat Bog’s Earthmonkey does it again with this psychedelic and macabre double record entitled “Underground Carousel”. Pete is best known for his contributions to Rock and Roll Station along with Steve Stapleton of Nurse With Wound. Forced Exposure says of Earthmonkey: “We live in a world where the term ‘psych’ is thrown around with such frequency that it seems to mean little more than ‘weird guitars,’ which is everything nowadays, and could well mean Cher for that matter. So, when we say ‘psych’ in relation to Earthmonkey, we mean Monks. We mean Bonniwell Music Machine. We mean Wolfgang Dauner. We mean Amon Duul II. We mean Taj Mahal Travelers.”After all is said and done Earthmonkey is Earthmonkey.
Dr Space, aka Scott Heller, plays in Øresund Space Collective, Black Moon Circle, Doctors of Space and contributes synthesizers to many other bands and projects.
This is the 5th volume in Dr’s Space’s collaborative series entitled, Alien Planet Trip, where Dr Space collaborates with various guitar players. The idea is to lay down synthesizer tracks and have great and original players add their magic touch and then Dr Space mixes them and sometimes adds additional layers. Suzuki Junzo has played in many great bands and projects including Acid Mothers Temple and he a major contributor on this album. He is a very unique player and helped to create a new universe in these tracks. Getting Pat Harrington from Geezer in was something that only happened in 2020! Dr Space had a new synth (Novation Ultranova) for this album and was creating very different kinds of improvisations.
Kungens Män (The Kings Man) started out in 2012 in Stockholm, Sweden. Always new sounds and improvisations, different guest musicians, different happenings. Kungens Män are rooted in the psychedelic/drone rock tradition of bands such as Träd, Gräs & Stenar, but also add influences from krautrock, shoegaze, noise rock and free jazz. On bandcamp Kungens Män describes themselves: “What started out with the sole purpose of hanging out as friends, occasionally with instruments in tow, has resulted in records on several labels and numerous European tours. The fundamental idea has never changed though – to get immersed in sound, and let the drone be the main trail taking the band to inner space – may it be through folkish melodies, noise, shoegaze sheets, free jazz outbursts, motorik beats or just good old head melting rock. And of course, it’s all improvised on the spot.” I have included English translations on the sleeve and in spidey. Highly encourage using the translations unless your Swedish is very good.
Weather Report was an American jazz fusion band active from 1970 to 1986. The band started as a free improvising jazz group with avant-garde and experimental electronic leanings and then moved to a funky, edgy sound incorporating elements of R&B and world music. Joe Zawinul used the latest developments in synthesizer technology and took advantage of a large variety of sounds and tone colors to make the band stand out. During the first half of their career, Weather Report were seen as one of the defining acts in modern jazz, winning the DownBeat “best album award” five times in a row. Heavy Weather is Weather Report’s eighth album was a commercial hit thanks to “Birdland,” a catchy change of pace for FM radio and a nice unification with older jazz styles. Austrian leader and keyboardist Joe Zawinul and saxophonist Wayne Shorter were the only original members left. After their introduction on 1976’s Black Market, Florida bassist Jaco Pastorius, Peruvian drummer Alex Acuña and Puerto Rican percussionist Manolo Badrena were promoted to full-time players on Heavy Weather.
Marius Welker is from Le Vigan, France and has teamed up with Mathieu Bec to make this beautiful jazz. Bandcamp translated from the French: " Marius Welker, multi-instrumentalist, great improviser, with many facets. You will find here all styles of productions from jazz, to free jazz, fusion, sometimes with just the right amount of electro... Happy listening and god bless you" Welker Bec is a duo born from an encounter around the love of jazz, world music and nature. Marius Welker on sax, flute, clarinet and vocals and Mathieu Bec on drums. They get a little wild sometimes, but don't we all.
Discogs describes Krautzone’s style as: “krautrock, space rock, ambient, psychedelic, free improvisation, drone, instrumental”. They are all that and more. Krautzone was a spontaneous collaboration of members from diverse bands (Electric Moon, Zone Six and The Pancakes). The Complete Works is a compilation of all three of Krautzone’s releases to date. It will take you on a magical trip blending all of the musical genres mentioned above while creating a unique style. Onkel Kaktus (bass), Lulu Neudeck (Drums), Rainer Neeff (Guitar), Martin Schorn (Synthesizer) and Dave Schmidt (Synthesizer, Organ).
Eight Bells is from Portland, Oregon. Legacy of Ruin is their third album. Beautiful vocals and melodies hanging over prog like fretwork. ’70s rock from Pink Floyd to Hawkwind are obvious influences. Pitchfork says: “Dual vocal lines emanate from some unseen place, sometimes braided together in a conjoined plea for connection… Heartbreakingly beautiful.” This is a combination of metal, experimental and prog rock. Hot off the presses released February 25, 2022.
Centre El Muusa is an Estonian psychedelic rock quartet founded in 2018 (previously named Centre Electronique Muusa). The project, which started as an avant-garde electronic duo of Panfilov and Brodsky in 2015, developed into a rock band, when it was joined by Erdman and Semenihhin. Gradually, the band transformed their sound from uncompromising garage krautrock to more spacious psychedelia with noticeable elements of ambient and country-rock, while maintaining their signature lo-fi approach to recording and not avoiding risks. Another great release from Sulatron Records.The cover art is Peter Max and Yellow Submarine on an extra tab.
Permanent Clear Light is often referred to as Finland’s top psychedelic group. Permanent Clear Light released their debut album, Beyond These Things, in 2014 to critical acclaim. Although Permanent Clear Light’s musical roots lie in 60’s psychedelia their sound is strictly contemporary. The trio considers the recording studio their main instrument and their sound is characterized by multi-layered instrumental work and strong melodic vocals. After a creative break, Permanent Clear Light has released its second album, Cosmic Comics, which shows that the band has travelled a long way through the spheres since their debut.
Warm freely improvised music. The band formed organically in 2019 from weekly jam sessions in Harlem. It is comprised of tenor saxophonist Ayumi Ishito, pianist Eric Plaks, bassist Zach Swanson, drummer Jon Panikka and multi-instrumentalist Daniel Carter. Recording an album of only free improvisation was Ishito’s long-time dream. Open Question’s music today, while fully improvised, remains firmly rooted in the jazz tradition. Can be edgy but won’t hurt you. A second volume is to follow soon.
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