Earthling Society — Sci-Fi Hi-Fi
(4Zero FZ006, 2009, CD)
by Peter Thelen, Published 2010-07-01Fans of freewheeling psychedelic spacerock should take note. Sci-Fi Hi-Fi is Earthling Society’s second release for the 4zero label, and their fifth release overall since their formation in January 2004. A four-piece of g/k/b/d, guitarist Fred Laird handles the vocal duties on the six long tracks herein. The disc launches with the swirling title epic that bears the influences of equal parts classic Hawkwind, early Gong, and any number of 70s German trippers. This gives way to an eleven-minute instrumental introspective piece that slowly builds into a haunting classic Düül-like miasma, bearing a simple repeating theme approached a number of different ways. As the album progresses the cuts tend to evolve into more open-ended song based forms, though still infused with an intense jammy lysergic ethic. When finally vocals return on “The Lantern” and “Future Dream,” the band seem to have assimilated some influences from Harvest-era Floyd, though still saturated with their trademark psilocybin-drenched dripping colorama. The 20 minute multi-part closing epic “E.V.I.L.U.S.A.” initially approaches the psychedelic landscape from a more garagey perspective, once again evoking some elements of the classic Düül sound. The lyrics sound like they are sung through a megaphone, so they’re pretty hard to understand. Don’t know what their beef with America is, but I’m pretty sure they’ll get over it. All taken, this is an excellent disc that every fan of contemporary spacerock should be hearing.
Related artist(s): Earthling Society
Didier Lockwood RIP – Word reaches us today of the death of one of France's great jazz musicians, violinist Didier Lockwood. His playing bridged many worlds, from traditional jazz to fusion to progressive rock, and his talent can be heard on recordings by Magma, Clearlight, Pierre Moerlen's Gong, and many more. Lockwood was 62. » Read more
10 Years of Fruits de Mer - The Incomplete Angler – Those of you who are faithful followers of Exposé will know that we have been promoting Fruits de Mer and its side labels and releases from nearly its first year. Now music journalist and author Dave Thompson has written a book chronicling the past ten years as a celebration of this milestone. » Read more
Bill Bruford Ventures into Uncharted Territory – Drum master Bill Bruford, veteran of some of the most creative bands in history (King Crimson, Yes, Genese, etc.), is sharing some of what he's learned about being a drummer and a musician in his new book, Uncharted: Creativity and the Expert Drummer, out on University of Michigan Press. » Read more