lunedì 19 ottobre 2009

Dark Star "Twenty Twenty Sound"

3 membri dei Levitation, ovvero Christian ‘Bic’ Hayes, Laurence O’Keefe e David Francolini decidono di continuare insieme la loro avventura musicale, perdendo per strada Terry Bickers e nel 1998 nascono i Dark Star.
Vita breve la loro, che purtroppo arrivò solo a un secondo album che tragicamente non vide mai la pubblicazione. Eppure il loro oscuro guitar rock psichedelico (certo figlio del sound dei Levitation, ma decisamente capace di andare oltre per visionarietà e trasporto emotivo) avrebbe davvero meritato più fortuna e rispetto.
Grandi lodi come sempre vanno al buon Claudio, che ai tempi d'oro era sempre sintonizzato su BBC1 e all'ascolto di I Am the Sun gridò, giustamente, al capolavoro shoegazer!! (1999 Harvest Records)

For whatever reason, Levitation only lasted two albums before fragmenting, and while they had something good going, it seems the split might have turned out for the best, because as a stripped-down trio Dark Star (oxymoronically) really shines bright. "Graceadelica" is simply the best new song I've heard all year... at once up-tempo and anxious, and also 100% out there in the cosmos. The guitar work of Christian 'Bic' Hayes (once of the Cardiacs) is fabulous... seemingly one foot on the pedal, one hand on the gliss bar. As the band's lead singer, Hayes shows off a pretty good voice even though he often hides it behind effects - almost the ole' megaphone trick. The rhythm section of Laurence O'Keefe and David Francolini (bass and drums, respectively) is solid and the unit really knows how to rock as we soon find out. "3 AM" is going to be all nice and dreamy we're lead to believe... until the badass chorus blasts through. A really well-written song certainly. "A Disaffection" rocks out most of the way through, and gets a bit dirtier. "Lies" is more like the old band, subtle, dreamy and adrift in the aether... would have fit nicely into Porcupine Tree's 'Stupid Dream.' "The Sound of Awake" starts similarly, but cranks it up in the end for a rousing finish.
Almost hard to call it a debut given their long history together, but 'Twenty Twenty Sound' is very strong start to finish (all 43 minutes... I guess those other EP tracks *should* have been used here!), and for it to be featured on a major label gives a big boost to cosmic rock. I'd just like to know why EMI hasn't yet bothered to release it here in the states! So, for those of you in the states who hesitate about the big import ticket price, you can rest assured that you'll at least get a worthy product with this one. And you still might want to write EMI a letter and give 'em hell. (Keith Henderson -

- Ninety-Six Days
- I Am the Sun
- About 3 A.M.
- Vertigo
- Graceadelica
- Disaffection
- Lies
- What in the World's Wrong
- Sound of Awake


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