Mandala — The Echoes of Your Mind
(Autumnsongs, 2020, CD / LP / DL)
by Henry Schneider, Published 2021-02-14
Rhys Marsh’s Mandala released their second album, The Echoes of Your Mind, on November 13, 2020, five years after their debut, Midnight Twilight. The Echoes of Your Mind features their new bassist Markus Wisth Edvardsen (bass, harmonium, darbuka) plus Rhys (vocals, guitars, saz, harmonium, doumbek), and Will Spurling (drums, doumbek, darbuka). Mandala recorded the main tracks live in Marsh’s Autumnsongs Recording Studio in Norway and then overdubbed the vocals and psychedelic elements over a ten day period in the midst of the midnight sun days of the Norwegian summer. The Echoes of Your Mind is a big departure from Midnight Twilight as Mandala now leads you on a 40-minute journey through Middle-Eastern-inspired psychedelic rock, though sometimes the middle Eastern themes are subdued. The album’s high points are “In the Midst of a Midnight Escape” with its slow dark and heavy beat, “One Last Circle” that begins as an interesting acid folk tune and morphs to a Middle Eastern psych jam, “The Fading Light” that shifts back and forth between headbanger rock and neo-prog, and the album closer “Beneath the Captive Sun,” a powerful eerie and drony psychedelic dirge that conjures memories of The Doors and Jim Morrison’s “The End” and “When the Music’s Over.” Needless to say, I was pleasantly surprised by this album and highly recommend it to fans of neo-psych.
SoundQuest Fest 2021 – SoundQuest Fest, first experienced as a live festival in Tucson Arizona in 2010 was created by ambient music pioneer Steve Roach. This 2021 event will unite a worldwide gathering of artists and audience members together for a 3-day online event unique in the realm of ambient music. From March 26-28th a continuous flow of streamed performances, audio-video wonder worlds and deep immersion zones will burn bright on Roach’s YouTube channel. » Read more
Chick Corea RIP – The sad news has reached us that Chick Corea has Returned to Forever, so to speak. The innovative keyboardist and composer died on February 9 at the age of 79. With a career that spanned from the 60s until shortly before his death, Corea touched many listeners with the incredible variety of music he produced in his lifetime. » Read more
Asia Minor Third Album on the Way – On January 29, AMS records will be releasing the long-awaited third album by classic Turkish-French band Asia Minor. Released last year in Japan, this will be the widespread debut of Points of Libration. The album features original members Setrak Bakirel (vocals, guitar) and Eril Tekeli (flute, guitar). » Read more
Harold Budd RIP – Harold Budd, one of pre-eminent American composers of avant-garde and minimalism, has died of complications from the coronavirus. Budd came to prominence in the 70s, championed by Brian Eno on his Obscure Records label, with music that blended academic minimalism with electric jazz and electronic music. Much of Budd's best known work was done in collaboration with other artists, including Eno, Daniel Lanois, Robin Guthrie, Andy Partridge, John Foxx, Jah Wobble, and many others. » Read more