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Magic Mushroom Band — The Spaced Collection
(Purple Pyramid CLP 9949-2, 1997, CD)

by Steve Robey, Published 1998-02-01

The Spaced Collection Cover art

This CD is a solid best-of compilation of this space-rock outfit. Stylistically, this is not far from bands like Hawkwind (80s), Gong (Trilogy era), or like-minded but harder-edged bands like Here and Now. The Magic Mushroom band does, however, lean a little closer towards pop music than any of these bands — strong beats, melodic solos, and verse / chorus structures are prevalent ("Pictures in My Mind" sounds a bit like Warm Jets-era Brian Eno). On the other hand, epic tracks like "Astralasia" are as cosmically mind-blowing as this sort of music gets. So this album is a mixed bag, with enough good tracks to warrant a recommendation, but not enough to be truly memorable. I suppose the derivative nature of the music tends to cast it in an unfavorable light, as they are inevitably compared to similar, better bands. In a way, this is unfair. On its own merits, this is a talented modern rock ensemble, mixing the psychedelic sensibility of the early 70s groups (Gong, Hawkwind) with the state-of-the-art technology of the 80s and 90s bands (Porcupine Tree, Ozric Tentacles). The synths are tasty and the guitarist wails. But it's been done before. So if you're a space rock fiend (especially of the more modern variety), dive in.

Filed under: Archives, Issue 14, 1997 releases

Related artist(s): Magic Mushroom Band


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