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4.0 out of 5 stars Crate digging psychedelic complilation CD part 2, 23 Sep 2009
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This review is from: A Monstrous Psychedelic Bubble Exploding In Your Mind-Volume 2 - Pagan Love Vibrations Compiled and Mixed by The Amorphous Androgynous (Audio CD)
Gaz Cobain of 'Future Sound of London'(FSOL) and now 'Amorphous Androgynous' was always going to blaze the trail with the introduction of bizarre soundscapes which had edges of 'KLF' 'Chill Out' with FSOL ISDN broadcasts where 'Everyone's Gone to the Moon' by 'Jonathan King'(pah!)and 'Tomorrow Never Knows' by 'The Beatles' would sit together in a snowy mix of other FSOL bleeps and ambient noises set a psychedelic background for work that Gaz Cobain and Brian Dougans would do later with 'Amorphous Androgynous' as the Psychedelic side project of FSOL. By the time 'The Isness' was released attempts had been made to stop relying heavily on sampling and actually create the music themselves with introduction of live sitar and other sounds to rival a George Martin production. The last three Amorphous Androgynous albums have shown this development with the more recent release of 'The Peppermint Tree and the Seeds of Superconsciousness' to the realisation of a full live band.
with the release of 'A Monstrous Psychedelic Bubble Exploding In Your Mind Volume 1' a new audience of people tuning in, turning on and dropping out to psychedelic music was generated, probably under the radar of the mainstream, but this compilation came to the attention of a certain Noel Gallagher and he hasn't shut up about it since. Amorphous Androgynous were invited to do an aftershow party for Oasis and then they created a 5 part 20 minute remix of 'Falling Down' by 'Oasis'. Oh dear everything has risen to the surface you say, well maybe, maybe not.
This compilation is far more uneven that the first volume of 'A Monstrous Psychedelic Bubble Exploding in Your Mind' but does follow a similar format of lumping singer songwriters with obscure progressive rock, contemporary psychedelic and acid folk artists and other ethnic, meditative samples of a love and devotional context. It has been composed very carefully and I especially noticed certain treatments like reverb or digital effects added to certain parts of the recordings, especially to blend the tunes together. What is different to the first volume is the use of more 'exotica' or library style electronic exploitation recordings. What is less interesting about this compared to the first volume is that the first volume started with a load of really excellent 'wig out' tracks and then got quite spaced out which was in the true spirit of a psychedelic trip. This volume has more of a diverse range of peaks and troughs. There are some genuine obscurities such as 'Sunforest', 'Ed Askew' and 'July' and a smattering of Krautrock as well with Faust and Dzyan. I would certainly recommend both volumes of these compilations, however I must criticise these and other compilations that seem to be obscure for the sake of it. I acknowledge that Gaz Cobain like Andy Votel has dived deep into crates in second hand record shops and charity shops and looking at compilations like this shares similar tastes to me, but there is always this need to present music that no one has ever heard of to cultivate some sort of kudos with it. Look at those Nuggets compilations by Luke Vibert, Barry Seven or the mystique that was created by DJ Shadow about David Axelrod. This is the same kind of thing. Sometimes you think they are plundering dance brakes from areas that have not been touched by other producers, other times they are really paying homage to little know artists and getting them more attention. This is great for groups like 'Comus' who recently reformed and still cannot work out why when David Bowie supported them at the start of his careers he was the one who got all the press. I suppose not writing songs about necrophilia, werewolves, rapists and mental health problems are the reason. I love 'Comus' and it is great that they and Nick Nicely have been added to the tours they are planning which should be great psychedelic multi media happenings. I know from what I have read that Gaz Cobain loves psychedelia and if this helps others engage with this music both new and old then it is a really good thing.
Personally I am eager to hear the other podcast volumes available on the FSOL website to check what other areas of diversity Gaz and Brian are capable of going to. Certainly if you go out and check out the releases of artists like Ed Askew, Dzyan, Ultimate Spinach, July, Mort Garson, Comus or Pearls Before Swine and buy their albums this is a good thing as some of this stuff definitely does need to reach a wider audience, if this helps you search out other artists not on sensationally obscure compilations by David Holmes, Luke Vibert, Andy Votel, Barry Seven, Amorphous Androgynous or even Jarvis Cocker etc then that is an even more effective message as it is cultivating an interest in this type of music for the listener or music fan to go out and search all over for all the wonderful, strange and beautiful music that is out there. If more people acknowledge the importance of psychedelic music, life and culture the current state of modern music will be much better and there will be more space for such great artists like 'Espers', 'Animal Collective', 'The Earlies', 'Friends Of Dean Martinez' and even 'Cranium Pie', not forgetting all the records that they have listened to arrive at their sound. Buy these compilations and get some inspiration.
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