Church of Hawkwind — Church of Hawkwind
(Atomhenge ATOMCD 1021, 1982/2010, CD)
by Anatole Gordon, Published 1994-08-01
[this was written about the 1994 reissue on Griffin Records - ed.]
The 1982 incarnation of Hawkwind that wrote Church of Hawkwind comprised Dave "Baron von" Brock, Harvey Bainbridge, Huw Lloyd-Langton, and Martin Griffin. This particular offering by these veteran psychedelic warlords bespeaks Robert Calvert's influence on the band. The subject matter relates to time and space travel; looking at the earth from above and with a command of its history and fate in mind; homo sapiens' impact on the Earth; and Earth as seen from the perspective of a person living in the future. The music is not easy to classify or draw analogies for, but one could hear certain elements of mid-period Pink Floyd, early Gong, and early Black Sabbath. The music can be quite edgy, with less flow but more contrast than Ozric Tentacles' music, for instance. For the CD release of Church, Brock rearranged the song order and added three new songs from the Electric Tepee incarnation of the band (Brock, Alan Davey, and Richard Chadwick). The songs are quite reminiscent of Brock solo material. Prior to Griffin's release of this disc, Church has been a surprisingly elusive album to locate. If you are a Hawkwind fan (and don't have this one) or a fan of space rock with an edge, then this album won't let you down. Church has perhaps five minutes or so of music that, although cool on initial listening, can become a bit tiresome over the long haul. However, there isn't any poor music on the album, and the lyrics are insightful and inspiring. The remaining 45-plus minutes of music more than makes up for any dull passages. This one is well worth the money.
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