The Spacelords | Liquid Sun
Label : Sulatron Records / Tonzonen Records
Release Year : 2016
Country : Germany
Genre : Progressive/ Spacerock / Psychedelic / Stonerrock
Matthias Wettstein – Guitar / Effects
Akee Kazmaier – Bass / Effects
Marcus Schnitzler – Drums / Soundscapes
About 50 years ago there was something happening in Germany that would enhance the landscape of music for 3 & 1/2 generations to come. This would affectionately known as Krautrock. This was a more subtle minimal approach to progressive rock unlike the over the top progressive rock coming from the UK at the time. Bands such as Amon Duul ii , The Can, Popol Vuhl and Kraftwerk to name a few believed that a less and more eccentric approach was more. Due to the post World War 2 bitterness krautrock would be rejected on UK soil. Therefore the bands from Germany bypassed the UK and sought audience in America.
5600 miles to the west in San Francisco California another less is more approach was happening within its own music scene. This approach was a more drug induced, mind expansive that would be called Psychedelic, Acid or Stoner rock. Bands like The Greatful Dead, Jefferson Airplane, Janis Joplin and Crosby, Stills and Nash were on the forefront of this revolution of music.
Come now to 2016. It is as if the Krautrock of Germany and the Psychedelic/Acid rock of San Francisco had ‘Melodic Intercourse’ and created a all new sub genre within progressive and psychedelic music. This new music would have all the elements of both scenes as well as a more free form improvisional sound that is not as pre conceived nor written ahead of time. One of the many multiple offspring that both scenes of music produced was current German progressive/psychedelic rockers The Spacelords.
The Spacelords Liquid Sun embodies a little bit of every element of the two music scenes mentioned above along with their own improvised and free form approach to the music itself. Although only 3 songs and a total album length of 33+ minutes long, The Spacelords Liquid Sun gives the listener a sonic sense of a full one hour of listening bliss. Within the 33+ minutes we find long improvised yet tight rhytymic sections with layer upon layers of intergalatic soundscapes and atmospheres. Now a brief yet detailed look at The Spacelords Liquid Sun.
Liquid Sun begins with a gentle and subtle percussive element with the cymbals from the drums. That element is quickly met by the tight rhythm section between the deep bass and rhytym guitar. This is a more progressive track meaning it starts out very subtle and climbs in various up and down tempo progressions and passages. At some points it sounds like a cross between Earthless meets Buckethead meets Oresund Space Collective. About the 3:00 mark it takes a heavily space rock approach within the track. At about the 6:00 mark the track takes a very 1970’s stoner rock turn. At the 7:00 mark it takes a highly and perfectly surround sound approach as if to give the listener an appearance of some alien contact. The final 4:00 the track is a very traditional psychedelic/stoner track that contains heavy progressive time signatures towards a climax.
Spaceship Breakdown starts off almost in the vein of very early ZZTop Tres Hombres’ passage of progression. It may give the listener an appearance of 4/4 however there is much more like a 5/4 and 7/8 time signature going on here. There also seems to be some various spaceship micro processing effects happening in the back drop. This track always breaks back to the same progression before taking a sonic ascension towards a climatic riff and passage. Spaceship Breakdown also has some very tight rhythm based guitar solo’s. This is a type of track if you had a intergalactic convertable going through the concourse of space and time you may hear this. Many of the space effects are wonderfully performed on a mellotron synth organ.
Black Hole starts out with a lot of guitar fret work making more effects as it goes and balancing them well with melody. It has a very eerie yet liquid and subtle vibe about it. This is met by a perfectly complimented deep bass and drum rhythm section. At about the 4:00 mark the band really settles in for a lengthy jam session. The passages and progressions off the riffs continue to climb with great continuity. For a 21:10 improvised track the band really picks up one another’s changes really spot on. There continues to be surround sound style soundscapes and effects. The track evens takes some serious down tuned stoner style elements as well. At some points this takes a very stoner metal turn. If you like long progressive free form improvised jam songs than Black Hole is perfect for your audio pallet.
The Spacelords Liquid Sun was a true adventure. It is definitely one of those albums the band can certainly build their legacy upon. They can convey the true nature of the goal they set without totally overwhelming the listener. Liquid Sun will be a album that will celebrated a few generations from now much like the Krautrock of Germany and Psychedelic rock of San Francisco is now. This is my first 5/5 for 2016.
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