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Different direction but still two genius' at work :)
on 26 April 2011
I've been a fan of Simon Posford's work since hearing the amazing 'Herb Gardern' track on Mystery of the Yeti (pre Hallucinogen & Shpongle) many years back in Goa. I wasn't that much into the trance movement which is ironic really considering the time I spent in Goa, although I did like the tracks 'LSD' & 'Shamanix' he did with Hallucinogen. The work Simon did on the Celtic Cross 'Hicksville' album was though really cool!
However, it wasn't until his Shpongle project that I really started to hear what sheer talent Simon Posford (and Raja & the others in Shpongle) had! Shpongle albums were ALL amazing and 'Tales of the Inexpressible' is still now one of my fav albums of ALL time!!! One album on a desert island... for me it would be 'Tales of the inexpressible' without a doubt! Yip, that for me is even above Pink Floyd!!!
As much as I like the many Top-drawer psy tracks from Aphex Twin, FSOL, Eat Static, Tripswitch, Entheogenic, Phutureprimitive, OTT, Shulman, Ozrics etc. I feel Shpongle managed to really NAIL that psy ambient sound for the FULL length of a whole album. (Saying that, OTT's 'Skylon' is something else!) While my fav psy individual tracks are from Aphex Twin, OTT etc it was Shpongle that have made my fav albums.
So when I later heard Younger Brother (I didnt realise until later on that this was Mr. Posford) I really liked 'A flock of bleeps'. Although not quite Shpongle, there were some killer tracks on 'flock...'. When I then heard 'Last days of Gravity' I realised that this project in itself was gonna be BIG, perhaps even bigger than Shpongle. Time will tell on that I guess. On 'Last days of Gravity' the tracks 'Happy pills' & 'Your friends are scary' in particular would get on ANY best of cd of all time for me. That's how good I thought 'last days' was!!! While not as complete an album as say Shpongle albums, 'Last days of Gravity' was really superbly excellently produced :)
So, now with 'Vaccine', they again have changed direction. For me who appreciates MANY styles of music, I think thats great! Yes, there are lyrics, but I think the lyrics are pretty damn good for a 1st proper attempt at a lyric-based album. While more 'rock' and guitar based tracks, there is still LOTS of psy in the tracks also for those that have the ear to hear ;) 'Vaccine' is the perfect album for the morning/afternoon after the night before, if you know what I mean ;)
I feel sad when I read 1-dimensional reviews from people who demand that artists stick to a very similar formulae again & again and dare not deviate!!! That to me just becomes boring and after a while I get sick of the sound. Simon, Benji & the others I feel sure, are more mainstream with this album, but it still is great. Sure, it is not the album I'd listen to at 2am during a party, not like Shpongle albums, but it is still supremely well produced and like I say, the suttle psy sounds for me work just as well as the full on earlier Younger Brother stuff.
More mainstream... good, perhaps it might influence and raise the barrier of those who create mainstream music. The psy sounds do fit well in this and to me, it is a strong album. My fav tracks so far (I only got this last week)... 'Shine', 'Train' and 'System 700'. I look forward to the time when I eventually see Younger Brother live and I hope to hear a mix of all the stuff the created on their very different, but brilliantly crafted 3 albums so far. What next, who knows, but thats just it with Simon & Benji... whatever it is I'm CERTAIN it will be pure quality :)