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Grails - Deep Politics CD (album) cover




Psychedelic/Space Rock

3.83 | 152 ratings

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4 stars The very first time I heard this album, I remained disengaged. However, as a believer in second chances, I revisited the album a few weeks later and enjoyed my stay. With each hearing, my appreciation for the various textures and progressions of the compositions themselves deepened. The music is breathy and rarely choked by excess. The psychedelic veneer only covers the more symphonic and post-rock elements, with what I hear to be a nod to Mike Oldfield. All in all, I find it to be an admirable album, perfect for a rainy morning like this one.

"Future Primitive" The album starts promisingly, with a low, grungy backing and Middle Eastern influences. I adore the riff midway through- it's original and allows the light-headed lead instruments ample opportunity to complement the piece.

"All The Colors Of The Dark" Groovy, jazzy piano and an eventual choral Mellotron provide the essential psychedelic textures to make this eventually melodic track work. The track assumes a soothingly victorious essence.

"Corridors Of Power" Adopting various Asian visages, including Japanese flute and Indian rhythms, Grails does a pleasing job of fusing the sounds of different cultures into a quiet, meditative piece.

"Deep Politics" Gorgeous piano prances through a dark atmosphere, making a composition that is at once somnolent and exciting, as though knowing there are monsters in the closet and under the bed and sleeping anyway because one must be fresh for work the next day, yes? When the drums enter, the piece maintains an eerie, antiquated sense of beauty- dream time now.

"Daughters Of Bilitis" Referencing a French coming-of-age film, the fifth track involves brooding chords with graceful drizzles of strings and piano.

"Almost Grew My Hair" Galloping acoustic guitar and dark electric guitar march through this piece, with the former (a twelve-string) maintaining control of the spotlight. The descending bass riff is quite similar to the aforementioned riff in the first track. The last passage builds on growling and shrieking electric guitar.

"I Led Three Lives" For me, "I Led Three Lives" is the downer of the album. Moody atmospheric pads meander here and there, and though the piece climbs into heavy progressive rock territory midway through, by that point, my attention begins to wander- just yawn-inducing and tedious.

"Deep Snow" Redeeming the album after the penultimate disaster, the final piece offers reflective acoustic guitar that builds to a melodic and stunning climax. The second half is raucous and Mediterranean in character, and it contains a passage that is vaguely familiar to me. This is a satisfying conclusion to a remarkable musical expedition that may require patience.

Epignosis | 4/5 |


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