The Aubergine That Ate Rangoon (Cherrystones rework) (7:14)
City Of Lagoons (4:57)
City Of Lagoons (Cherrystones rework) (5:07)
Review: A connection that perhaps didn't seem obvious at first but makes sense when you think about it, space rock titans get the niche reissue treatment on Emotional Rescue with Chuggy's ever prolific stable picking two deep cuts from the band's frankly intimidating back catalogue. Originally released in 1976 on "Astounding Sounds, Amazing Music", "The Aubergine That Ate Rangoon" and "City Of Lagoons" are both examples of Hawkwind at their cosmic best, and not afraid to hold down a groove either. Alongside the originals, we're also treated to some wild remix versions from wayfaring astral traveler Cherrystones - lucky for us!
Review: The colourful obi strip astride the cover of this audiophile reissue boasts that Imani's "Out of The Blue" album is "the ultimate private press jazz holy grail". While that claim is debatable, copies of the Gilles Peterson championed 1983 edition, which the San Francisco based band pressed up themselves, have been known to change hands for four-figure sums. Musically, the four tracks are breezy, sunny and summery. Opener "Just Another Love Song" sets the tone, with soulful group vocals and jazz solos rising above a warm groove, while "Somebody's Love" is a slow jam smothered in spacey synthesizers. "Byrd's House" is a jazz-funk dancefloor number - this time blessed with extended, eyes-closed guitar and piano solos - while "Friendship Cover Charge" is a stomping peak-time workout that should send dancers spinning.
Review: The latest essential missive on San Francisco-based Cumbia label Discos Mas comes from a previously unheard artist: confirmed vintage drum machine and fuzzy psych-guitar lover Pancrudo. The producer's vinyl debut, which has been pressed in limited numbers on gorgeous marbled vinyl, includes two impressively retro-futurist workouts. Check first languid and decidedly psychedelic A-side "Pulsatron", a hip-hop tempo kaleidoscopic dream that sounds like Harry Nillson after a few too many swigs of liquid acid and a fistful of hallucinatory chili peppers. Pancrudo returns to his cumbia roots on flipside "Maestro Del Kiosco", which wraps wonderfully fuzzy, boogaloo-era guitars round a shuffling rhythm track.
Phantom Band/Linear Johnson & The Protons - "Rush Rush"
Drums Off Chaos - "Drums Off Chaos"
Review: The sadly departed Jaki Liebezeit was the kind of drummer whose influence will be continually recognised over the decades to come. Best known for his work in Can, there are also many more sides to this singular sticksman, and Emotional Rescue has chosen to shine a light on his post-Can period living in Stollwerck. On the A side of this 7" curio is the sound of Phantom Band with Linear Johnson & The Protons. "Rush Rush" has a spiky new wave bent to it, but still Liebezeit's drumming stands out. The B side "Drums Off Chaos" need little explanation - it's the sound of one of the all-time drumming greats letting rip in a ferocious blast of percussive abandon.
Review: Following previous outings for Los Angeles-based imprint ESP Institute such as 2016's Jaguar Mirror and 2017's Night School Of Universal Wisdom, Swedish multi-instrumentalist Oscar "Thunder" Tillman and his 'personal shaman' Pontus make the kind of music you only hear in your most vivid dreams. Incorporating kraut, prog-rock, ambient and disco at the heart of their boundless sound creations, they complete an illustrious trilogy here on their most expansive work to date. "Condor Sunflower" is a truly mesmerising psychedelic folk journey in convincing '70s fashion. On the B side, things take a more upbeat direction on the tripped-out disco funk of "Creation Discotheque".
Review: When it comes to plugging in mega stacks of amplified prog-rock, Vancouver-area band Black Mountain deliver a retro-futuristic sound that's as large as any Godzilla soundtrack. With Destroyer presenting a fifth LP on Bloomington label Jagjaguwar, Black Mountain go someway in delivering a bold cross reference of only the best and most legendary points of 60s, 70s and 90s rock n roll regalia. With keys and piano mixed with guitars, distortion and vocoders giving the band a futuristic, krautrock (Deutsche elektronik musik) edge, British psychedelic and raw but atmospheric arrangements give the band their own undeniable identity. With songs passing the bottle from slow dancing rock, flashy hair metal, to synthy guitars and cosmic arpeggios, the best metal of today is still way up there, on Black Mountain.
Review: Are you a dreamer? Swedish band Death & Vanilla ask across eight contemporary takes on German Krautrock, French Ye-ye pop and 60s psychedelic. Vocals are breezy, their moog synths fat, with guitars drenched in reverb and delay. At times the band's sound aligns with other kindred groups like Goldfrapp, Portishead or even Bjork (with "Vespertine") through their subtle take on downbeat, alternative '90s pop and this is heard most in "Let's Never Leave Here". "Are You A Dreamer?" delivers the Malmo trio a fifth studio LP following last year's conceptual soundtrack for stage and screen entitled "A Score For Roman Polanski's The Tenant", and this time around, our highlights include the spacey western riffs of "Eye Bath" and the ever-so dreamy "The Hum". Esoteric modern pop for sure.
Review: Jean Pierre Decerf's records have been sampled by top talent in the game (Wu-Tang Clan's RZA) and have also been massively inspirational to the likes of indie talent such as Air. However, the Parisian has always been something of a recluse and it's only now that his best moments have been collected into a definitive compilation by Born Bad Records. As both the cover and title suggest, this stuff is pure psychedelia from start to finish and tracks like "Like Flight" are simply stunning, where freaky guitar riffs meet with twisted synth patterns, funky percussion swings and seductive vocals. Not to exaggerate or anything but this LP might well be the best thing that's landed here at Juno HQ this week and you'd be silly not to pick it up. Essential electronic and discofied innovations.
Review: Apparently not content with making an album that floored classic rock fans old and young - last year's solo psych-glam masterpiece 'Redeemer', Ty Segall here deals out his second heavy-ass power-trio masterclass with a band who effortlessly transcend any notion of being a 'side-project'. Whilst certain ingredients are audible from Segall's other work, such as his sparky and infectious knack for melody and love for the seamier sonic landscapes of the early '70s, 'II' is no less than a timeless blast of garage-birthed intensity, a double album brimming with gusto and chutzpah, yet with an expansive approach to match their hard-rocking drive, proving there's more to this band than distortion boxes and ruptured eardrums.
Review: The mysterious Gothenburg based collective have apparently styled this as their 'folk' album yet this is less than half the story - indeed, 'Requiem' stands as an adventurous travail through styles and headspaces, moving from the vibrant psychedelic jams of their earlier work to ritualistic acoustic interludes, and with hi-life wave-ups rubbing shoulders with grage rock grit. Their ceremonial splendour is only enhanced by this all-encompassing outlook, with the more understated moments effortlessly hitting the same revelatory dimensions as the third-eye-cleansing moments of drama. And any band who can manage to make the panpipes sound thrilling and vibrant as an ingredient in their mystical brew would appear to have strange magick indeed on their side.
Review: The back catalogue of this mystical and mercurial German collective, numbering Messrs Moebius and Roedelius from Cluster as well as Neu's Michael Rother in their ranks. has always been frustrating only in its brevity, and with that in mind this live material from their heyday is as manna to krautrock enthusiasts - these at once meditative and exploratory voyages through inner space bear all the hallmarks that made their two studio efforts such evergreen portals to a fertile age of experimentation and inspiration, and an inspration to Eno and Bowie amongst a legion of others - Sehr kosmisch, indeed.