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Mammal Machine - Mitsugi (Esoteric Rituals) CD (album) cover


Mammal Machine


Psychedelic/Space Rock

3.49 | 4 ratings

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4 stars MAMMAL MACHINE are a new super group from Japan. Every single member brings much experience from other bands in (Leningrad Blues Machine, Marble Sheep, Boredoms). Keyborder Yumi Hara Cawkwell is also known for collaborating with diverse canterbury respectively jazz rock artists like Hugh Hopper or David Cross. Now at the end of 2010 this debut album was ready to be released on the famous Captain Trip Records label. Although rooted in psychedelic respectively spacey fields they widen the scope a lot towards krautrock and avantgarde here. I bet they've jammed for some hours and took the most promising excerpts to fill roundabout 60 minutes of rather experimental soundscapes.

So we have a really impressing start with Das Glasperlenspiel - wow ... a German title deriving from the eponymous Hermann Hesse novel I assume. And another wow ... what a wonderful jam is this, including (Japanese?) gong, some mysterious vocals ... and excellent soaring space guitar. The following Tale Of Eight Dog comes nearly in the same vein, bearing an hypnotic deep toned bass line and fuzzy electric guitar work. This is quite accessible so far, but gradually they step forward to more weirdness then.

The avant/krautrock flavoured The Don't Look Prohibition holds several portions, faded in and out - first starting with a strong 'Careful With That Axe, Eugene' spirit .. ohhh, this warms my heart .. but then the prohibition claims attention, hahahaha ... they turn to another mood, a spaced out behaviour comprising bells, cymbals, diverse percussion instruments, otherworldly voices, creepy synths ... finally drifting into the cacophonous Quagga cosmos. But then The Lost Primer For The Secret Do falls back into space groove territories in between.

The Can/Amon Düül inspired Fledermäuse Auf der Autobahn showcases delicious vocals by Cawkwell where the halting Pferdeeisenbahn is another exemplar full of soaring space guitars which do not fail to reach for high altitudes here. Finally The Lost Archive Of The BMIC shows them off the beaten path due to an intense avantgarde attitude - the only song providing some keyboard work including piano which is really dominant.

MAMMAL MACHINE's output is definitely not dedicated to the last hour before you go to bed because very ambitious and not really relaxing. Sometimes the sound quality comes crude, probably with intent while adapting simple retro(spective) recording circumstances. Crawkwell's vocal contributions are rather excentric, however her organ work is generally restrained - which one or two will regret - in opposite to Mitsuru Tabata's varied and offensive guitar work. Due to their experimental spirit/approach, which shimmers through all the way, I consider this essential and very interesting for avant psych and krautrock lovers.

Rivertree | 4/5 |


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