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Ramases - Space Hymns CD (album) cover




Prog Folk

2.97 | 50 ratings

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Prog Reviewer
2 stars Though being a rather strange and original album I don't think "Space Hymn" is really an essential one unless for fans of spiritually influenced 60's hippie music. In fact reading the liner notes alone is telling you already where you are. The main flawing of it are first the lyrics which are mainly done in the vein of tantric chants by repeating the same lines over and over again and secondly the rather poor compositional qualities apart of few exceptions. It reminds a bit to a programmatic CD of a sect in order to brainwash people. The two front people Ramases and Sel were in real life Martin Raphael, a salesman for central heatings and his wife believing he was a reincarnation of an Egyptian pharao.

Okay let's come to the music song by song. The opener "Life Child" is most probably the best one of all the tracks. Songwriting and musicianship are here definitively on their height of the whole album.

"Hey Mister" shows an extreme contrast to the first one with repeated lyrics as mentioned above and some nice background percusssions. Probably a quite nice one to sing when sitting around a camp fire (possibly combined with sharing some "herbs").

"And The Whole World" is very much reminiscent to Joan Baez. Another nice one for "camp fire evenings".

In "Quaser One" there are some synths introduced for the first time. Soft acoustic guitar and percussions create a very relaxed hypnotic atmosphere. One of the nicer ones alltogether although being not too much exciting.

In "You're The Only One Joe" the infinitively repeated song line becomes really annoying after a while, it's the classic "brainwashing" type of chant. I read somewhere that the line might come from the movie "Midnight Cowboy" with Dustin Hoffman. I don't remember this one so I fail to confirm this.

"Earth People", first track on side two continues the spiritual voyage with Ramases trying to find a way "to speak to the earth people". Vocals are actually rather nice here combined with soft acoustic guitar and some spacy synths.

In "Molecular Delusions" we listen to kind of tantric chants, done more in a muezzin kind of way combined with typical indian raga music. The sitar here is obviously played by "Thy Majesty Divine Ramases" himself. The track is in fact rather monotonous at least in my ears which don't like very much indian music.

"Balloon" is a nice song in the vein of 60's hippy music with the involvement of the whole band playing together.

"Swan Year 2000 " is a very short a cappella one sung by Sel.

"Jesus Come Back" is telling with its title already everything what it is about. A very simple acoustic christian song, again very much 60's alike. Quite boring unless one is a very religious fellow.

Last track "Journey To The Inside" is somehow musically different from the rest with chantings of Ramases accompanied by a loop played in reverse mode. At the end of it HE is explaining his spiritual theories to the audience.

As a conclusion "Space Hymns" is a more or less nice psyche folk album, but in contrast to my fellow reviewer at least for my taste I'd not call it an essential one and only interesting for the ones who are deeply into 60's spiritual psyche pop or for fans of the band 10CC whose members were playing on this record. Sorry I'm not able to rate it higher than 2 stars. BTW my review is based on a copy of the 11-track vinyl version.

hdfisch | 2/5 |


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