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Hawkwind - Hall Of The Mountain Grill CD (album) cover




Psychedelic/Space Rock

3.99 | 462 ratings

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3 stars Hall of the Mountain Grill is a perfectly solid space-rock record-it doesn't do anything particularly exciting or innovative but none of the tracks are below average, and a few are quite wonderful.

"The Psychedelic Warlords(Disappear in Smoke)", besides having one of the best song titles of all time, also stands as one of Hawkwind's very finest songs, with a trippy, catchy riff and keyboards that make the act of downing LSD sound like an almost regal affair. "Wind of Change", while pretty in parts, takes too long to start and smells of filler, and "D-Rider", while largely a "standard-issue" space rock song, has a great chorus("spacing out, we're spacing iiiinnnnn!") that, like the first song, somehow makes tripping balls sound like an activity fit only for the highest of cosmic priests. "Web Weaver" might be the album's only real down note, a generic hippy-trippy jingle with no real drive or force.

Side 2 continues with the curious mix of the bland and the intense, as, while "You'd Better Believe It" by and large fails to grab attention and the title track is as blatant filler as it comes, "Lost Johnny" slams the album back into high gear. Recalling the sort of cosmic sleaze one only finds in a 2000AD magazine from the '70s, Lemmy sings about bad trips and turning tricks for drugs in a tune that sounds like Albert King playing an impromptu show on Jupiter. It's a dirty, nasty, rollicking song and it's also one of Lemmy's best, with Hawkwind or with Motorhead. "Goat Willow", while short, is a very pretty interlude, and "Paradox", the album's closer, also proves to be the best song on the album: The trip is over, and now you have to face the consequences as this grave-but-soaring track serves as a piece of cosmic prophecy that, thanks to the intensity of the keyboards and Dave Brock's celestial vocals, proves to be utterly convincing.

Hall of the Mountain Grill proves to be too rote for too long in certain places to recommend as a full album. That said, there are a few songs here that simply can't be missed for any fan of space rock-or indeed, classic rock. My advice? Go to Itunes, or the online music store of your choice, cherry pick the choice tracks, find your psychedelic of choice and have yourself an excellent evening.

40footwolf | 3/5 |


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