Exposé Online banner

The Spacelords — Water Planet
(Tonzonen TON033, 2017, CD)

by Jon Davis, Published 2018-01-14

Water Planet Cover art

Tell you what — if I got an album by a band called The Spacelords and it wasn’t at least a bit like Hawkwind, I’d be kinda disappointed. Water Planet gives us three long tracks of rocking, grooving, space rock along the lines of Ozric Tentacles or Hidria Spacefolk: hypnotic drums; guitars treated with wah-wah, phaser, and echo: sweeping synthesizers; and touches of non-Western instrumentation. This German band is a trio on their fifth album since 2010, with Mattias “Hazi” Wettstein (guitar, effects) and Marcus Schnitzler (drums, soundscapes) in place since the beginning and Akee Kazmaier (bass, effects) on board for his second outing with the band. Given the amount of repetition involved in this kind of music, it can be a challenge to keep a listener’s interest. The Spacelords manage it by gradual transformation, so they’re never just repeating the riff the same way. The bass part will vary slightly, the drums will put accents on a different beat, a different keyboard sound will come and go, an audio sample from NASA will pop in, and so on. At widely spaced intervals, the riff will actually change. The credits don’t list any other players, so I’m going to assume the multiple guitar parts and synthesizers are accomplished by overdubs, but it doesn’t matter — this is cosmic music that avoids ambient expanses and gets to business. The playing is universally solid and creative, without the kind of guitar showboating that some long-jam bands are prone to. Concise songs with verses and choruses you will not find, but if you want some rocking grooves to send you off planet and through the spaceways, this band has your ticket.


Filed under: New releases, 2017 releases

Related artist(s): The Spacelords

More info
http://thespacelords1.bandcamp.com/album/water-planet

Latest news

2020-03-24
Bill Rieflin RIP – The sad news reaches us today of Bill Rieflin's death. Rieflin was best known as a drummer in bands ranging from post-punk to industrial to indie-rock to progressive rock, including work with The Blackouts, Ministry, Nine Inch Nails, Swans, Land, and King Crimson. Rieflin had been battling cancer for several years, and succumbed to it on March 24. He was 59. » Read more

2020-03-17
Cruise to the Edge and Seaprog 2020 Festivals Postponed – The worldwide outbreak of the novel coronavirus has started to produce casualties in the music world, and festivals are not immune. We've had word that both the Cruise to the Edge (originally slated for March 27 - April 1) and Seaprog (originally June 5-7) have been postponed to later dates, with those dates to be announced. » Read more

2020-03-06
McCoy Typer RIP – Word reaches us today of the passing of one of the most influential pianists in the history of jazz, McCoy Tyner. His tenure with John Coltrane in the early 60s includes some of the most treasured recordings of the era, including My Favorite Things and A Love Supreme. After leaving Coltrane's group, he had a long and successful solo career. He was 81. » Read more

2020-02-18
Jon Christensen RIP – Word reaches us today of the passing of Norwegian drummer Jon Christensen, a musician whose sensitive playing did much to help define the atmospheric sound of ECM jazz recordings. His work with Jan Garbarek, Bobo Stenson, Terje Rypdal, and many more was sensitive and varied, adapting to a wide variety of styles while maintaining a distinct identity of its own. Christensen was 76. » Read more

2020-01-21
Gong Announces UK Tour for 2020 – Having spent the last few years touring the world, including dates in Japan with psych legend Steve Hillage, multiple headline European tours and festivals, America’s Cruise to the Edge festival, a South America headline tour, and a headline performance at Tomorrow Festival in China, the band have won the hearts of both traditional and modern Gong fanbases. During this live journey, Gong has delved further into the truly psychedelic, exploratory, and mind-expanding side of the music. » Read more


Previously in Exposé...

Zao - Akhenaton – Zao should need no introduction for progressive fusion fans, as they were one of France's best groups of the 70s, releasing five albums, four of them essential listens. While Zao has reformed...  (1995) » Read more



Listen & discover



Print issues