Tuesday, February 12, 2019

Music Review //
Vinyl Dial
"Space Wizard"

https://flamingovapor.bandcamp.com/album/space-wizard //

This one starts off sounding like birds chirping, but then it feels much like beeping instead as this becomes beautiful melodies within electronics.   There are pianos and beats- words are spoken- and this just starts off in a heavenly way but perhaps also in space ala David Bowie.   More words come through and then this first song just kicks it up a gear and goes into this high synth place.    As the song goes on it just really drives through those laser fields of deep space.

On the second song we drop off into somewhere deeper, as it feels like we're swirling around and every strike is deliberate.   This has that overall electronic feel to it like Phantoms vs. Fire, but it also has this rock sound mixed in as well which reminds me of Rush, if we're using examples that people might have heard of most before.    As these sharp synths really ring in it can feel like the soundtrack to a movie from the 1980's/1990's or perhaps a video game, which also makes me think of my recently reviewing the film "Double Dragon".   It can get quieter for bass solos, but then kick right back in.

This is electronic chaos.    It just drives and drives.    Though it is instrumental, there are more than enough instruments to make up for the vocals as they can seemingly sing on their own.     There are just some great moments with the keys on the third song which are flashing me back to my youth, a time when music was different and, yes, this does feel like it's also out of some movie I watched back then but cannot seemingly find a way to put my finger on the title of it right now. 

Distorted singing does come out during "Spectral Universe", so this is not entirely instrumental, but the vocals are so well formed with the music that they feel like a part of it more than how sometimes the vocals seem to put the music in the background.     "Solar Sands" seems to go into a darker, pinball type of place and this is just so fast I'm not sure if it's going to break into ska or a Chiodos song but I love that it's on the edge of one of the two before the robot vocals come in and bring me back into this world of computer fantasy. 

Somehow on the fifth song I am reminded of "My Sharona" before the synths ring in like an old NES game.    The way the guitar chords come crushing into the final song, "Bad Trip", I am reminded of something metal.   It's close to "Iron Man" but I also hear some Rage Against the Machine in it and it's just awesome.   It has that electronic feel to it, but it's also so big and bold (and not just because of the length, but I think because of the double bass double effect) it reminds me of something like Coheed and Cambria. 

If you look at the Bandcamp info for this (and I mean how else will you listen to it?) you'll come to find that the last track, "Bad Trip", is like an album within itself and yet it somehow also still manages to tie in with the other songs.   I'm not sure I've heard anything work like this with music before (an album within an album, but it's also at the end) but if I had to make a comparison it'd be like a film, such as "Kill Bill", divided into two parts but still working together as a whole.   In many ways, I feel like this whole album is to be experienced from start to finish- not one song at a time- and that makes the whole listen that much more meaningful.

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