Exposé print issues (1993-2011)
The Legendary Flower Punk — Beatroot 2020
(Bandcamp no#, 2020, DL)
by Henry Schneider, Published 2022-01-05
Russian psych-jam band The Legendary Flower Punk is a side project by The Grand Astoria’s Kamille Sharapodinov. They have recently appeared on several of Fruits de Mer Record’s Krautrock compilations: Head Music 2 (2020) with their cover of Michael Rother’s “Sonnenrad,” this year’s Head Rush with their cover of Harmonia’s “Watussi,” the FdM Club member release Birds of a Feather with an excerpt of the band’s “White Magick Zen - Live,” and the soon to be released Heads Together with their own composition “Every Now and Zen.” In Spring 2020 The Legendary Flower Punk had tour plans to play 16 gigs in 18 days, but the pandemic laid these plans to waste. To salvage plans, they made a last-minute scramble to beat the quarantine and gathered in their rehearsal room, set up their recording equipment, and then jammed and jammed and jammed until they could jam no more. Their sound engineer Igor Karnaushenko then mixed, mastered, and edited the music into 16 sets, the number of shows they had intended to play. The final step was then to prepare and release their album Beatroot 2020, a compilation of the finest moments from those 16 sessions. Though band members have come and gone over the years since their formation in 2012, the 2020 pre-quarantine gathering included: Kamille Sharapodinov (guitars and percussion), Mike Lopakov (bass), Denis Antonov (electronics, keyboards, and percussion), Leon Sukhodolsky (saxophone), Dmitry Vnukov (saxophone), Denis Kirillov (keyboards and flute), Nick Kunavin (drums), Nick Antonenko (drums and percussion), and Roman Kvachev (trumpet). The resulting ten tracks present two hours and 40 minutes of pure psych rock jams sounding like they’ve been produced by the love child of Ozric Tentacles and Sendelica. Some of these tracks are in the 20- to 30-minute range, while others are a modest 6 minutes in duration. My personal favorite track is the 14-minute “Every Now and Zen” with its drones, Indian influence, and trance-inducing vibe that grows and develops into a gorgeous soundscape, where a saxophone drops out of the cosmos for the final four minutes. If you’ve never experienced The Legendary Flower Punk, Beatroot 2020 is a great introduction. Plus, if you are really intrigued, the band has a separate Bandcamp page where you can explore 50 of their live shows dating back to 2016.
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