Thursday, August 13, 2015

Ozric Tentacles

My first thought on hearing about a new Ozric Tentacles album was “40 minutes of groove based sub-Chemical Brothers syntho wank”. I have heard them in the past and recognized that there is a requirement for certain pharmaceuticals to be added to the experience in order for it to reach fullness and I fully expected them to be continuing in the same manner – but not a bit of it!

This is a superb album, full of shade and light, loaded with melody alongside the grooves and some of the playing is breathtaking. Even the double album format hasn’t dimmed my appreciation of the album – there isn’t a moment of filler here.

The band have some new additions but the result is a tightening of the music and a certain locking down to add structure as well as the experimental jamming that has always been a feature.

On the down side, none of the tracks has a hook to stay in the memory but on the up side the album creates moods and impressions that will keep your mind ticking away and experiencing its own jam session.

Each and every track takes you on a journey, sometimes to places that are excited to be and sometimes with a certain sense of unease and foreboding, but they resolve and there is a definite identity and structure to every track.

This could so easily have been ‘by the numbers trance-synth’ but there is a freshness about the album and no sense of marking time.