Baku Llama — Eris
(57 Records B113, 2007, CD)
by Peter Thelen, Published 2008-01-01Eris is the debut release by this Southern California based trio, oft given to systematic discoveries in the rockier terrains of what one might call soundtrack music. Their vision is rooted in explorative rock, informed by elements of jazz, dark ethereal pop, west-coast folk rock (especially on the vocal tracks featuring Ann Bernath), and a mildly psychedelic vision that imbues their sound at times. At the elemental level, we have a most prominent voice for piano, supported by other keyboards, vibes, electric bass, electric and acoustic guitars, and drums. It’s mostly instrumental, although where vocals do appear (sometimes sung, sometimes spoken, or in a background supporting role) they definitely make their mark. A strong improvisational spirit permeates many of the tracks (“Six to Midnight” and the nine-minute “Side Two” are the standouts in this regard), and keyboardist Rick Whitehurst mixes his ideas in well over the heavier fuzz-laden guitar sounds of David Bernath. In general, though, there is a bit of a dark and mystical spirit afire here, and a strong helping of introspection as well. One might occasionally be reminded of some key elements of Pink Floyd in their heady soundtrack period (More, Zabriskie Point, even Ummagumma) but without all the overt psychedelic sorties; or even the more dark, diffuse work of bands like Djam Karet and Edhels, although with Baku Llama, the guitars tend to play more of a support role. All taken, this is an impressive debut.
Related artist(s): Baku Llama
Audion Is Back in Business – Our esteemed colleague Alan Freeman has restarted Audion Magazine after a seven year hiatus. The new incarnation is available online on their Bandcamp site. Audion's history goes back to 1984, and included 58 issues up to 2013. Issue #59 is available now, and #60 is in the works. » Read more
Romantic Warriors IV – Krautrock (Part 2) Is in the Works – Zeitgeist Media, the people who have brought us the great series of documentary films chronicling the history of progressive rock, are working on the second installment of their examination of German music. Krautrock 2 will focus on artists from Münich such as Guru Guru, Amon Düül II, Xhol Caravan, Kraan, Witthüser & Westrupp, and Popol Vuh. » Read more
Simeon Coxe RIP – Simeon Coxe, best known for his experimental electronics in the band Silver Apples, has died at the age of 82. The band's 1968 debut album set the stage for both German electronic music and experimental punk music a decade later. Coxe died on September 8 from pulmonary fibrosis. » Read more