Vibracathedral Orchestra – Unnatural With Pain​-​Relief


[ Krayon Recordings, 2015 ]

The British-based drone lords Vibracathedral Orchestra were always about two things: The Drone and The Repetition. Be it hi-fi or lo-fi, this musical collective have been exploring the outer limits of psychedelia for almost 20 years (beginning in 1998), releasing dozens of albums and EP’s all over the musical underground throughout the years. Their newest release so far is the 2015’s Unnatural With Pain-Relief – a rusted, looping trip built around tribal rhythms, a primitive guitar anti-riff, fried circuits and electronic fuckery at the lowest level, all working together to create an unpenetrable sonic maze designed to suck you in and not allowing you to escape, even if you become the Minotaur himself. May be not the best VCO material ever, but still manages to be really mysterious and disorienting.

Lay Llamas – Ostro


[ Rocket Recordings, 2014 ]

Italian duo Lay Llamas carefully blend the Old with the New, combining the Italian prog and German krautrock rhythmic traditons with the new, polished techniques in music productions, enhancing the already mind-altering compositions with the newest technologies and tricks, expanding echoes even further, making the atmosphere even more dense, adorning the guitar and drum-based trips with computer-based electronic sounds and effects… Ostro is a treatise on different moods and styles of the so-called “psychedelic music”, skimming between bliss and terror o its nine tracks, creating a sense of danger or anticipation and making everything a dream in the next few minutes. It’s spacey, it’s rhythmic, it’s paranoid, it’s ecstatic, it’s psychedelic. Recommended!

Mammatus – Sparkling Waters


[ Spiritual Pajamas, 2015 ]

Nearly a decade after their 2006 self-titled debut, the Corralitos, CA based psych/prog rockers Mammatus are back with their 4th album, which may be very well their best – and definitely the most diverse.

It seems that on Sparkling Waters, the musicians decided to make up for their 2013 LP, Heady Mental, which at times seemed tad rushed and underdeveloped. On the newest release they are back with heads full of fresh ideas, however never breaking up with some classic sounding blend of 60’s psych and 70’s prog. They expand their sound even more in some very nice directions, taking cues from modern post-rock without falling into the sea of pretensiousness (which, unfortunately, happens way too often in both modern prog and post-rock), and even ambient and progressive electronic music – like the standout synth-based suite “Sparkling Waters Part Two”. The guitarists here are really talented and it seems like they’ve taken their flowery-yet-technical style to the new heights, however still keeping the balance between psychedelic freakout without falling into six-string soloing wankery. Quite possibly the best Mammatus album since their debut, if not the best one. It’s up to you to decide, dear listener. Nonetheless, highly recommended!