Category: space rock

New Video: Cloakroom Releases a Trippy and Mind-Bending Visual for Sludgy “Fear of Being FIxed”

Northwestern Indiana-based space rock outfit Cloakroom — currently Doyle Martin (vocals, guitar), Bobby Markos (bass) and newest member Tim Remis (drums) — formed back in 2012. And since their formation, the Indiana-based outfit have released an EP and two full-lengths: 2013’s Infinity EP, 2015’s Further Out and 2017’s Time Well.

The band’s third album Dissolution Wave is slated for a January 28, 2022 release through Relapse Records. The album’s material tells the story of a universe created by the band’s Doyle Martin as a way of processing the events of the past couple of years. “We lost a couple of close friends over the course of writing this record,” he says. “Dreaming up another world felt easier to digest than the real nitty-gritty we’re immersed in every day.” 

Within the space western of the album, an act of theoretical physics — the dissolution wave — wishes out all of humanity’s existing art and abstract though. In order to keep the world spinning on its axis, songwriters must fill the ether with their compositions. But the Spire and Ward of Song act as a filter for all human imagination: Only the best material can pass through the filter and keep the world turning.

With lyrics based on a detailed, imagined cosmology Dissolution Wave marks several different things for the band: Their third album will be released as the band marks their tenth anniversary as a band. The album is the first batch of recorded output with Tim Remis, who joined the band back in 2019. And importantly, the album, which was recorded at Tolono, IL-based Earth Analog reportedly sees the band expanding upon their dynamic space rock palette: the material features loops and piano by HUM‘s Matt Talbott and exterior percussion by Sweet Cobra‘s Jason Gagovski.

“Fear of Being Fixed” is a slow-burning and forceful dirge centered around sludgy power chords, thunderous drumming, chugging bass lines paired with Martin’s plaintive falsetto floating over the mix. And while sonically bringing Spelljammer to mind, the song feels haunted by profound loss and uncertainty.

Directed by Colorshift, Vin Romero and Julius Jiminez, the recently released video for “Fear of Being Fixed” features the members of Cloakroom performing the song in a studio and shot on grainy, and over processed VHS tape — to mind-bending effect.

New Video: Nantes, France-based Space Rock Collective Albinos Congo Releases an Anthemic Ode to the 90s

Albinos Congo is a Nantes, France-based collective led by founding members and creative masterminds Tristan D’Hervez and Pierre Stroska that features a rotating cast of about a dozen of Nantes’ best players. Although they cite glam rock and the Beastie Boys as major influences on their sound and approach, their sound, which they’ve dubbed Romantic Neo Space Punk, features elements of pop punk, hip-hop, psych rock, grunge rock, garage rock, shoegaze and even krautrock. 

The French collective’s latest single, the bombastic, Brit Pop meets krautrock meets space rock-like “Space Jam” is an improvised jam that the band recorded and a mixed about a week before heading to Spain to tour for their debut EP. Centered around fuzzy and distorted power chords, blown out boom bap-like drum beats, an enormous arena rock friendly hook, bubbling and gurgling synths and falsetto vocals the track as the band explains was partially inspired by Remy Zero’s “Save Me” and by the 90s classic Space Jam. (Unsurprisingly, the song openly references ET — but in a sort of parallel universe in which ET joins the Toon Squad and helps save the world. Would Warner Brothers allow that kind of crossover? Who knows? But imagine the possibilities, man. The possibilities! Additionally, while the song is trippy as hell, there’s hope for a world of universal acceptance.)

Directed by the band’s Tristan D’Hervez, the recently released video for “Space Jam” features the members of the collective performing the track in a  smoke machine-filled studio and strobe lights but ET makes an appearance wearing a Toon Squad jersey. It’s defiantly DIY and trippy as hell. 

 

I’ve written quite a bit about the Bay Area-based avant-garde free rock/psych rock collective Dire Wolves over the years, and although the act has gone through a number of significant lineup changes, the act — Jeffrey Alexander (guitar, synths), who has also had stints running Secret Eye Records and as a member of Jackie O’ Motherfucker and Black Forest Black Sea; Georgia Carbone (vocals); Brian Lucas (bass); Faun Fables‘ Sheila Bosco (drums, piano); Village of Spaces‘ Arjun Mendiratta (violin) and Spires that in the Sunset Rise’s Taralie Peterson (sax) — has a long-held reputation for crafting deeply hypnotic, lysergic music and for being incredibly prolific, releasing over a dozen albums since their formation back in 2008.

Now, as you may recall, the Bay Area-based band’s soon-to-be released album Grow Towards the Light is slated for a June 28, 2019 release through Beyond Beyond is Beyond Records, and the album, which is their fourth official album also marks the band’s first album with Carbone contributing vocals — typically Carbone singing in her own invented language. Thematically, the album as the band’s Jeffrey Alexander explains in press notes, “tries to express the interconnectedness of all things.” “Spacetime Rider,” which I wrote about a few weeks ago was an expansive and free-flowing jam centered around shimmering guitars, a motorik groove, slashing bursts of violin and Carbone’s Nico-like wailing. And while recalling early Velvet Undergound, the track had a patient, painterly air.

Interestingly, Grow Towards the Light‘s latest single “Discordant Angels” is a slow-burning and hypnotic dirge centered around shimmering violin, a gypsy-like rhythm and Carbone’s ethereal wailing. The song finds the band effortlessly meshing elements of classical music, psych rock and folk in a way that’s simultaneously trippy, haunting and unsettling.

 

New Video: Up-and-Coming Danish Indie Act Aztek Releases a Trippy Visual for Anthemic “Darkest Hour”

Formed back in 2015, the Aalborg, Denmark-based prog rock act Aztek — Benjamin Vestergaard (vocals), Michael Buchardt (drums), Rasmus Lykke (bass), Minik Lundblad (guitar) and Jeppe Søndergaard (guitar) — can trace their origins to shared interest and love of experimental and prog rock. Since their formation, the Aalborg-based quintet have developed a reputation for an adventurous yet accessible sound, centered around traditional rock instrumentation paired with dreamy synths and Vestergaard’s plaintive vocals, which imbues the material with a distinct melancholy. 

Aztek’s full-length debut, 2016’s critically applauded Dream Dealer was a harmonically experimental and ambitious effort that led to the band playing some of the region’s biggest venues and festivals, including Way Up North, Nibe Festival and SPOT Festival. Building upon a growing national and regional profile, the up-and-coming Danish act released their sophomore album Perfect Imbalance last year. Aztek’s latest single, the expansive, Pablo Honey and The Bends-era Radiohead meets space rock-like “Darkest Hour” finds the act ambitiously expanding upon the sound that has won them attention across Denmark and Scandinavia — with fuzzy power chords and rousingly anthemic hooks paired with a heart-on-sleeve earnestness. However, despite its anthemic quality, the song is about observing a loved one’s during a life crisis and the complicated array  feelings that come along with it.

Interestingly, the song’s structure, alternating ethereal verses with heavy, power chord-driven hooks also manages to be influenced by the song’s message — that the darkest hour is typically just before dawn; and that most importantly, things do (and can) get better. Set in space, the recently released video by Anders Riber Nielsen features 80s influenced CGI: the viewer first moves among a large constellation of stars, before passing through a terrestrial-like planet with mountains. It’s trippy and expansive yet centered around scientific reality. 

Comprised of Jack McEwan, Luke Parish, Danny Caddy and Luke Reynolds, the Perth, Australia-based quartet Psychedelic Porn Crumpets quickly developed a reputation in their native Australia for crafting enormous riff-based psych rock. Earlier this year, the members of the Perth-based psych rock outfit made their Stateside debut — and they managed to kick ass and take names with a series of acclaimed SXSW sets.

Building upon a rapidly growing international profile, Psychedelic Porn Crumpets’ latest album And Now For The Whatchamacalit is slated for release on Friday, and the album is reportedly a culmination of the experiences they’ve lived while on the road — and a gradual refinement and evolution of the band’s sound. Interestingly, the album’s latest single “Hymn For A Droid” will further cement the band’s growing reputation for crafting riff-based psych rock as the song is centered around arena rock friendly riffs and a motorik groove within an expansive song structure. Play it as loud as possible and rock out hard, friends.

“This track reminds me of a Rhino at full charge,” the band’s Jack McEwan explains in press notes. “I was absolutely cranking it while recording. Pretty sure my housemates didn’t get a lot of sleep the week this was being crafted. The lyrics were based on the end of a relationship, those months you’re questioning where your life will end up and if you’re making the right decisions. You’re almost robotic, ticking along like a drone that repeats the same lines over and over in your head, and then you go out with your mates for the first time in ages, take a bunch of thought juice and everything makes more sense. . I wanted the chorus to come out of nowhere like an instant realisation, confusing at first and then the next time you hear it all becomes way clearer.”

 

 

 

 

 

Comprised of Alex Hastings and Bryan Gomez, the Los Angeles, CA-based duo Pioneer 11 derive their name from the famed space probe of the same name. And unsurprisingly, the duo specializes in space rock; however, their take is a hazy and hip-hop influenced one that has drawn comparisons to Dark Side of the Moon meets J.Dilla, Caribou meets Flying Lotus and Radiohead among others. Interestingly, “Squishy Sunbeam” off the duo’s forthcoming full-length debut Gravitorium is centered around ethereal vocals, twinkling keys, shimmering guitar lines, a motorik groove and thumping beats — and sonically, the song recalls the hazy sunniness of Cut Copy‘s In Ghost Colours but with a trippy cosmic glow.

 

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