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Lizards Exist - Lizards Exist CD (album) cover

LIZARDS EXIST

Lizards Exist

 

Psychedelic/Space Rock

4.03 | 120 ratings

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siLLy puPPy
4 stars In the existential quandaries of the world of space rock, questions are posed that may seem obvious yet nothing is what it seems in the Twilight Zone where everything must be questioned and validated under totally new paradigms of reality. Do LIZARDS EXIST or are they holographic manifestations of a program known as The Matrix? While these questions may not be answered in musical form it hasn't stopped this Croatian psychedelic space rock band from the city of Karlovac from pondering these enigmatic concepts that may or may not be beneficial to the psyche.

Anyways, this band which may or may not still exist (unlike lizards of course!) and has so far released only one self-titled album which emerged in the year 2014 as a mere CD-R but has found perpetual vitality on Bandcamp, YouTube and other musical formats. This so far only musical representation of these trippy Croatians features a mere four tracks at a traditional album's playing time of just around 40 minutes. The first three tracks all race past the seven minute mark but the grandaddy of them all is the closing 17-minute "Anunnaki Dance" which showcases the band's true psychedelic prowess in flying colors.

The lineup consists of Boris Brozović (drums, percussion), Sini?a Mraović (guitar), Roko Margeta (keyboards, synthesizer) and Tihomir Zdjelarević (bass) who provide a rock based jamming session. Unlike lots of modern space rock like Ozric Tentacles for example, LIZARDS EXIST features the guitar and bass as the dominant instrumentation although the keys and drums are just as prominent. This isn't the dreamy kind of space rock in the vein of the most lysergic Krautrock trips to be heard but rather based on a jazzy rock sort of underpinning that are decorated with trippy guitar effects, keyboard sound excursions and other musical accoutrements but overall this is highly accessible jam rock with guitar sounds ranging from funk and jazz to reverb rich Floydian escapism.

I can't say there is a tremendous difference between tracks. They all sort of blend together like good space rock should. This is the kind of psychedelic music that works both actively and passively therefore you can either zone out and let it all soak in or you can follow the individual instruments and experience the musical tapestry in action directly. This is an all instrumental experience unmarred by substandard vocals or bad accents so there is a timeless universal beauty to LIZARD'S EXIST that also delivers a brand of space rock purity. There are really no bells and whistles to offer. This music is promulgated by hypnotic bass grooves, warm guitar tones and ample doses of keyboards.

The highlight is the 17-minute closer "Anunnaki Dance" which features some excellent guitar playing. Based on blues and jazz guitar riffing the instrument is allowed off its leash and delivers some crazy solos while the bass, drums and keys dance around the main riffing framework. The track is composed of two separate parts and after the guitar dominated first half concludes then things really dip into the lysergic zone. Think of Can's "Aumgn" or "Peking O" on "Tago Mago" and you're on the right track, however this section doesn't outstay its welcome and the rock based guitar / bass / keys / drum jamming session resumes and ushers the album out much as it began, namely with guitar-led melodic cyclical loops that conspire to create a larger psychedelic journey through sound.

Not as "out there" as many space rock bands but carefully calculated to deliver just enough psychedelia without leaving the mainframe space rock behind. The music drifts from super mellow to the closing heavier rock freakouts with crazy guitar pick slides and the drums and bass bantering on. The organs are always in the mix adding the proper doses of spaciness to the overall scene. I would definitely consider LIZARD'S EXIST a more retro sounding band mining its sounds from the fertile 70s scene. Think the more guitar oriented jams in the world of Krautrock and you're on the right track. Well done without sounding derivative of any other band. Hopefully these LIZARDS will crawl out into the sun for another round of space rock.

siLLy puPPy | 4/5 |

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