Tag: space rock

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.”

 

 

 

 

New Video: Introducing the Psychedelic-Inspired Sounds and Visuals of OOLALA’s “Falling Out of the Universe”

Although they’ve dubbed themselves a space rock trio, the Philadelphia, PA-based rock act OOLALA’s Tim Sonnefeld-produced and Fred Kevorkian-mastered debut album The New RockRoll Cosmology reportedly draws from psychedelic jazz, stadium rock, glam rock and heavy soul while thematically focusing on both universal and deeply personal themes. “Falling Out of the Universe,” the first single off the band’s soon-to-be-released debut was released earlier this year to praise from Philebrity, Philadelphia’s longest-running city blog and others for a scuzzy and bombastic, scorching, riff-driven song that sounds as though it were influenced by T. Rex and The Black Keys but with a sleazy, backroom shuffle.

The recently released music video for the song features the members of the Philadelphia, PA-based trio performing the song in front of weird color lights and special effects to evoke the sensation of UFOs and psychedelics — and of time’s relativistic nature; but with a mischievous sense of humor.

Now, if you’ve been frequenting this site over the past couple of years, you’d know that members of the Philadelphia, PA-based heavy psych act Ecstatic Vision, currently comprised of Doug Sabolik, Michael Field Connor, Jordan Crouse, and Kevin Nickles initially formed in 2013 to primarily play “what they wanted to hear.” And with the release of their 2015 debut effort, Sonic Praise, an effort that drew from a wild variety of influences including Krautrock, Fela KutiSun RaHawkwind Aphrodite’s Child, Olatunji, Can, and early Amon Duul ll and for primal, psychedelic and intense live sets. Adding to a growing profile, the band toured with an impressive list of internationally renowned acts including Enslaved, YOB and Uncle Acid and The Dead Beats, Earthless, Red Fang, Acid King and others, and followed that with a lengthy European tour that included dates with Bang and Pentagram, as well as a set at the Roadburn Festival.

The Philadelphia-based hard psych band’s much-anticipated, sophomore follow up,  Raw Rock Fury is slated for an April 7, 2017 release through Relapse Records and as the band explained of the album in press notes, “With Raw Rock Fury, we set up to make an album that would remind listeners  of what an unpolished, dangerous rock recording should sound like.” And the album’s first single, “You Got It (Or You Don’t),” which I wrote about last night, is as the band described it as a “searing mash-up of the driving rhythms of Sly and the Family Stone mixed with the sound of Hawkwind playing Funhouse-era Troglodyte Rock.” And in many ways, the new single revealed a wild sense of unpredictability and danger that most contemporary rock sorely lacks. The album’s latest single “The Electric Step” manages to mesh the trippy, cosmic, stoner rock vibe of their debut with a swaggering, raw, unbridled and improvised energy as the band pairs blistering guitar work with guitar chords played through layers and layers of effects pedals, a forceful, propulsive rhythm and howled vocals to create what may be the band’s most explosive, insistent and primal stomp yet.

 

Holy Monitor is an an Athens, Greece-based music collective, who over the course of two self-released digital EPs Aeolus and Golden Light have developed a reputation for blending space rock, shoegaze and ambient music with music that explores ancient Greek mythology and the macro structure of the universe. And as you’ll hear on “Bend The Trees” off Aeolus, their sound might remind some listeners of RIDE, Spaceman 3, TOY,  and others — as undulating and ambient synths are paired with a tight motorik groove, rolling bass lines, buzzing guitars and cooed vocals that float over an equally trippy and ethereal mix.