ASTRAL SURF GYPSIES: BREATH OF THE RAT LADY
CDR: Bunkier Productions BVI [2005]
Ltd x 190


I Adore Thee in Song
I Magi N'aton
A Rifless Sea
Ballad of the Rat Thieves
Taramis (I Am Star)
The Veiless Mater
Might of Thy Breath

FIVE…A shit band name = shit music. Fact!! I give you: Boyzone, Keane, The fucking Eagles…I rest my case. Astral Surf Gypsies have a cool name. A great name. A name to name drop into conversations for the fun of seeing all the head scratching and looks of puzzlement etched across foreheads. A name that conjures up spaced out beach loving travellers. Or an amalgamation of Hawkwind, Beach Boys and The Levellers…couldn’t think of any famous Gypsy groups. They probably exist but not in my personal universe.

FOUR…Astral Surf Gypsies do not sound like Hawkwind…or the Beach Boys…and defin…fucking…ately not The Levellers. We are blessed with small mercies. They may take their influences from drone / neo-folk / electro acoustic / 60’s wig out psychedelic music but they are first and foremost utterly individual and unique in a world polluted with piss poor clones of every genre. Were drugs ingested whilst making this recording? Does a bear shit in the woods. Only people tripping on every class A, B through Z drug could conjure up what the Gypsies call music.

THREE…Spaced out…far out…fucked up and too weird even for hardened weirdos…ahead of their time in a cosmos only they inhabit…set in a mindset even they probably don’t understand or comprehend. The head trip to end all head trips. Frank Zappa and Gerry Garcia must be spinning uncontrollably with jealous rage in their graves.

TWO…The fusion of so many diverse musical genres really shouldn’t work. Somehow over the seven tracks they manage to hold it all together moving seamlessly from guitar strummed neo folk songs…sounding like Frank Black with a hernia…through experimental dronescapes with added twanging guitars…taking in the outer limits with alien soundtracks and Shaman chants …returning once more to obtuse bastardised folk. Gulp!! Not forgetting the added samples, the tub thumping, the echo effects, the musique concrete, the…the…awe fuck…you try and work it out for yourself. I’ve dissected it. I’ve tried to rationalise it. I’ve tried to place it on an astral plain without success. "Breath of the Rat Lady" goes way beyond every perception imaginable. It’s a living breathing conundrum of ideas. A veritable cornucopia filled to brimming of musical goodness and ideas…head and shoulders above anything else that vaguely tries to call itself different.

ONE…Astral Surf Gypsies are GO!!


ANM

[Bunkier Productions]

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