Quarkspace - Drop

Year of Release: 2001
Label: Eternity's Jest Records
Catalog Number: n/a
Format: CD
Total Time: 73:42:00

And so the American masters of intergalactic soundscapes, Quarkspace, grace the public with their latest studio album, Drop. Or give it away, more like. Feeling that commercially releasing a record with an anti-commercial theme running across it would be hypocritical, not to mention an awfully risible paradox, the band has refused to sell Drop and instead made available the record in its entirety as mp3s at the official Quarkspace website (www.quarkspace.com), not to mention the fact that it also encourages everyone (that's right, everyone including you) to get the music to the far reaches of the universe by whatever means possible, as long as the dirty smell of profit isn't intervening.

Mighty kind of these musicians, that's for sure. Because Drop soars just like the wonderfully hallucinatory Spacefolds improvisations, trips out on late sixties psychedelia with peaceful clouds of smoke floating away through the air, and closes the festival with a frightfully theatrical performance that...well, let's leave that for later, shall we? For the moment being, the space devotee will have nebulae and stardust aplenty to satisfy his astronaut shortcomings and dive through a musical wormhole of vast reach, tripping out on the swirling electronics of tracks such as "Starbridge Freaks 2" and "Vazt." Contact? Star Wars? Mere illusions of the astral domain that Quarkspace rules over in engrossing pulses of light and shadow.

Just as asteroids spin silently by and distant lights glimmer surrounded by a planetary system canvas, however, the album also engages in a time traveling mood back to the Earthly reigns of spacey psychedelia, where peaceful mental flight takes hold and tripped out hippies sing of integrity and identity in the face of modern control. And so it is that Drop alternates continuously between the outer reaches of the universe in electronic exploration and psychedelic songs with an ineludible retro sound, with the former constituting the most engaging part of the record and the latter an interesting series of interludes that becomes quite nice, although not adamantly unforgettable, after getting used to it.

But it is when a planetary collision of sorts occurs between the two that the ending piece, "Blanket Hill," acquires the revolutionary verve of Thorn The World Poet Woodruff and the band provides a chilling collection of synthesizer swirls and rock atmospherics that culminates Drop in an interplanetary musical orgasm. Teeming with the apocalyptic synergy of The Doors' "The End" and a frighteningly intense recital from Woodruff regarding the fight for peace, freedom, and equality in a world where oppression and control are juggernauts of power, the twenty-minute odyssey continues its stride relentlessly and viscerally, heading straight for the synapses in one's brain and setting fire to them with sheer atmospheric intensity. It takes someone extraordinary to give something like this away for free. It's happening. Now. Get off your chair and do something about it already!

Similar artists: Hawkwind, Tim Blake, Tangerine Dream

Spinnin (2:34) / Starbridge Freaks 2 (6:38) / Sound Inside You (4:43) / Pavlovian Causeway (5:28) / The Storm (2:43) / Newton's Dream (6:59) / Drop Out From The World (2:45) / Vazt (4:36) / Bonnydoon (6:00) / Starbridge Freaks 3 (6:27) / The Lie (4:29) / Blanket Hill (20:19)

Chet Santia - guitars, bass, vocals, loops, percussion
Jay Swanson - synthesizers, keyboards, loops
Paul Williams - drums, synthesizers, keyboards, vocals, loops
Stan Lyon - guitars, bass

Additional musicians:

Steve Hayes - synthesizers, samples
Greg Kozlowski - guitars, synthesizers
Bevin Lynch - vocals
Thorn "The World Poet" Woodruff - poetry
Matt Kearns - guitars
Kendra Lucas - vocals
Cameron Tummel - percussion
The Bonnydoon Players of Santa Cruz - percussion

Quarkspace (1996)
Live Orion (1998)
Spacefolds 1 (1996/2001)
Spacefolds 2 (1997/2001)
Spacefolds 3 (1997/2001)
Spacefolds 4 (1998/2001)
The Hidden Moon (1999)
Spacefolds 5
Spacefolds 6 (2000)
Spacefolds 7 (2001)
Drop (2001)
Node In Peril (2004)
Spacefolds 8 (2007)
Spacefolds 9 (2008)

Genre: Psychedelic-Space Rock

Origin US

Added: June 2nd 2002
Reviewer: Marcelo Silveyra
Artist website: www.quarkspace.com
Hits: 718
Language: english


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