martes, 13 de diciembre de 2011

25 years of "Sound of Confusion"

Although few magazines and websites have noticed this year we celebrate not only 20 years of "Loveless" by My Bloody Valentine, but above all, 25 years of publication of the debut of the most important psychedelic band in History, for whom he writes these lines of course: Spacemen 3 .

Rugby astronauts in 1986 released a beautiful and hypersonic album called "Sound of Confusion" that was, like Sonic Boom would say later, "a tribute to our influences" of the 7 songs on the album, 3 were covers of their idols from the 60's: "Rollercoaster" by 13th Floor Elevators, "Mary Anne" from Juicy Lucy and "Little Doll" from the Stooges.

In a context in which prevailed the horde of new wave and dark gothic bands in the British alternative scene told a few exceptions: Jesus & Mary Chain, Loop and all the people of the Creation label, Spacemen 3 were a real hammer blow to a scene that was beginning to flirt with the marketing and the media to finish in what later would be called hypes, groups ensambled by the industry or the scene now known as "indie" made by people who see music as something not serious, real or sacred as it was in advanced cultures of humanity but as a means to get fame, status and / or money, as mere "entertainment".

Against all those things they arose led by Jason "Spaceman" Pierce and Pete "Sonic Boom" Kember and left us a handful of songs with which many would find meaning in a grey and dreary reality. The album begins with "Losing Touch With My Mind" with some nods to the Rolling Stones in the acidic and melodious guitars, we listen to Jason sing "I need it babe, it makes me feel all right". "Hey man", or "Amen" in some bootlegs, is a song where the group declares with radiant happiness his eternal love to drugs, they even get to say "I don't mind dying Lord, But I hate to leave my mother crying".

It is really worth to highlight the work done in creating layers of guitar noise filled with overdrive and fuzztone that are the beginning of what later became known as shoegaze even before My Bloody Valentine, it is no accident that scene groups as Chapterhouse, Ride or Slowdive recognize the influence of Spacemen 3 and in some cases have performed covers of them.

The fantastic version performed by the Rugby pals of  the 13th Floor Elevators anthem, "Rollercoaster", endorse the above lines above: in addition to devising new vocal melodies for the song they take a great job of decorating the issue with overdrive and sick pseudo tribal percussion that seems more like made by an infant in protest plan. Hypnotic noise unnerving. Ditto with the version of "Little Doll" from The Stooges.

And if as much acidity, irreverence and intoxication were not enough they end their fantastic debut with 8 minutes of protoshoegaze minimalism and pre space-rock called "O. D. Catastrophe" which sings the story of a boy who runs out of money because of their drug addiction that ultimately end up causing his death by overdose.

As we know the influence of these wizards of neo-psychedelia has been increasing with the passage of years arriving even to South America and to Peru where bands like Hipnoascensión , Transparente , Salomon Jedidias , Leche Plus , etc. hoist the flag of psychedelic lust and spacey/guitarrorist/minimal music

As some say, time is the best ally of the vanguard. We are therefore confident that the influence of Spacemen 3 will last many years.


Wilder Gonzales Agreda.

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