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Chilliwack - Chilliwack (II) CD (album) cover

CHILLIWACK (II)

Chilliwack

 

Psychedelic/Space Rock

2.96 | 5 ratings

From Progarchives.com, the ultimate progressive rock music website

Sean Trane
Special Collaborator
Prog Folk
3 stars Chilliwack's second album was a double album, depicting the now-trio (they had lost their bassist) in an Amerindian artwork with a superb shot of a West-Canada Pacific island gracing the innerfold. Multi-instrumentalist Lawrence will also take bass duties on this double effort. Bill Henderson now writes every track and often alone for the shorter ones. Due to contract/management difficulties, this album was the second Self- titled ione but is often referred as II.

While the first of the four side is dominated by short tracks (5 min max), there are some real lush moments (the organ-loaded Rosie comes to mind and the instrumental interplay in Ride-Out >> Hi Peter ;-), but the change we had heard on their previous album is generally confirmed: the West-Coast rock influences are here to stay and this is especially evident on the vocal-heavy Ridin'.

The second side of the first disc is rather different comprising of a short, almost meaningless acoustic Always and a gigantic almost 14-mins Changing Reels. This is the first of the three monster tracks loading the rest of the album. The track is an extended exercise on an idea/theme with some improvisations, but it never gets messy and never overstays its welcome either. While not fascinating, this is an honest work that was so typical of those years, a bit indulgent but not over-indulgent. Nevertheless these type of tracks are usually more suited as a live recording rather than a studio one.

On first side of the second disc stands a 6-movement suite (for a whopping almost 19 mins) Music For A Quiet Time. While this track might appear very ambitious from a progressive point of view (we are all hoping for another What Is Love epic from the Collector's debut, naturally), it really is mostly a very ambient dreamy trip and in this case there are lengths, and even if some moments are gaspingly beautiful (some parts of Shine), there are also experimental moments (the Clap/Chants) where you're better off zonked-out of your mind to get a load of this stuff. I hope you saved some of that weed for the Whistle/Flute Pads, because you will need it, this time. The rest of the track is of the same acabit/vein. Yes this third side is definitely over-indulgent and does overstay its welcome, no matter how experimental they get. But I want their dope dealer's address; the man has some mean stuff ;-)

The final track Night-Morning is downright spacey, making Saucerful Floyd sound like teenyboppers. In many ways, we are close to Krautrock by the cosmic side of this track, reminiscent of the early Tangerine Dream, Cluster, Popol Vuh and Kraftwerk, but a more acoustic and real instrument version. As much as the previous track is a lot of rubbish (or psych mumbo-jumbo), as much as this one is easily their most worthy on this album and although completely unrepresentative of the Chilliwack name and sound, it stands easily as their best work, outside The Collectors.

Although there is a slight deception after Chilliwack's first two albums, us progheads hoping for more structured albums after their two Collectors releases, there is no doubt that Chilliwack was still out for musical adventures, but most likely not being aware that the ground they were breaking was not fascinating.

Sean Trane | 3/5 |

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