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Serpentina Satelite - Nothing To Say CD (album) cover

NOTHING TO SAY

Serpentina Satelite

Psychedelic/Space Rock


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Rivertree
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Psych/Space Team & Band Submissions
4 stars I'm not sure if I should treat this as the band's debut - they had released a demo four years before that and they officially consider 'Nothing To Say' as an EP - even though it has a total length of 48 minutes! Nevermind - here we have a very good album made by this Peruvian band. Three shorter, rough and violent songs are framed by two spacey jams - that's for the first orientation.

Nueva Ola starts spheric ambient. Normally I would swear they are using synthesizer but the instrumentation description negates that. So it must be a guitar sound deformed by effects. A whispering voice appears whilst the song picks up speed by and by, getting propulsive finally when drums and bass are coming in. This reminds me of AMON DÜÜL 2's hallucinatory 'Yeti' sessions as well as the Russian band VESPERO. The title track Nothing To Say marks a stylistical break then initiated with a hard riffing guitar. This is worked out in the heavy rocking vein of HAWKWIND - wild and raw but also hypnotic repetitive on the other hand and provided with a fantastic interlude reduced on both guitars duelling. Flavio Castillejos delivers some typical space rock recitative with echo effect.

The Last Drop and Madripoor are getting nearer to stoner rock then, impelling with a heavy bass and puzzling effects establishing guitar walls as well as solo excursions. The album's highlight is Kommune 1 by all means - the title is pointing to the wild times in Germany accompanied by the development of krautrock - greetings to Uschi Obermaier and Fritz Teufel. Starting with a child speaking (in Spain I assume) you can detect reminscences to AMON DÜÜL 2 once again - a fantastic trip over the course of the next 24 minutes which is barely half of the production. Floating and rocking parts are alternating when they are exploring the roots of psychedelia and space. I wonder if the band is able to carry this to their live performances.

'Nothing To Say' is nothing really surprising new from a stylistical point of view but presented with a great intensity - first of all because of the striking guitar work of Renato Gómez and Dolmo. This is really fascinating, maybe comparable to bands like OBSKURIA and LA IRA DE DIOS - but only in a wider sense. A must have for die-hard psych/space and krautrock lovers.

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Send comments to Rivertree (BETA) | Report this review (#201837)
Posted Thursday, February 05, 2009 | Review Permalink
avestin
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3 stars They might have nothing to say, but they sure have what to play

Influenced by kraut-rock and space-rock, by psychedelic-rock and freak-out jams, Serpentina Satelite, despite the name of this release, have a lot to "say". Carving their way in a musical world defined by freedom to play whatever you want, however you like it, this Peruvian quintet (originally a quartet) is trying to make their presence noticeable and with this album, they may just do that. Taking their time to develop themes, they create magical soundscapes filled with mystery and spellbinding beauty.

Pink Floyd-ian panorama peers through the drumming and guitar effects of the opening track Nueva Ola, as mystifying voices (in Spanish) cut through the musical canvas enveloping the listener. A penetrating guitar riff blazes the ear drum of the second track, Nothing To Say, which surprisingly has lyrics. The drums then join in introducing a dynamic and fast pace and it seems the band has quite a lot to say as the voice of Flavio Castillejos narrates on every once in a while. This is quite a ferocious atmosphere and sound that the band creates here. Repetitive and powerful, it doesn't cease and would be too much if it weren't for the guitar producing weird effects as the music goes on. The drums do let go at around four minutes in, but the guitar madness goes on until the drumming resumes about a minute and half later, thus creating a much needed interlude. The whole track has an hypnotic effect (much like the rest of the album) despite its fast pace and high dynamics or actually because of them going on relentlessly. The Last Drop opens at a mid tempo pace, sounding like a psychedelic jam occasionally joined by (this time) English spoken words. Again the repetitiveness is at the heart of the music, trying to achieve a hypnotic effect and successfully so. As this track is rather short, the result is quite mesmerizing. Madripoor sounds heavier than the previous tracks to some extent (as is The Last Drop but lesser so). The effects in the background, which are well done, should have been mixed louder to achieve a better effect. This is a great freak-out piece, heavy and crunchy. As if a late 60's band time traveled to our days and got to use a modern day recording studio, resulting in this fresh sounding piece of psychedelic heavy rock. Finally we come to the epic track Kommune 1. It sounds like a live recording of the band with its dirty sounding production, as if they're playing outdoor. I guess this is done to create and preserve the same spirit of the bands and sounds that influenced them. The freak-out level here is high, with great energy, passion and intensity. The dynamics and volume go up and down as they shift back and forth between controlled madness and abstract interludes. This is a wonderful piece to listen to late at night potentially as a hallucinations inducer.

There's not much new in this album, but it is fun and enjoyable. It's also quite diverse; not all the tracks sound the same and they seem to lean towards various directions, as one can gather from the descriptions above (I hope). A fine release, especially recommended to those into jams and freak-out psychedelic rock.

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Send comments to avestin (BETA) | Report this review (#211771)
Posted Sunday, April 19, 2009 | Review Permalink
Windhawk
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4 stars A good debut album from this Peruvian outfit.

Opening and closing this production are longer improvisational efforts similar to bands like Oresund Space Collective in structure, with shifting guitar patterns on top of a solid foundation created by bass and drums. The overall sound have more of a vintage sound though, with strong Krautrock references in both cases. The opening number is somewhat lighter though, with additional references that makes me think of German outfit Eloy - in particular when it comes to the bass guitar.

Wedged between these lengthier affairs are three shorter numbers that comes across as much more structured overall, with a heavier sound that makes me think of mid 70's Hawkwind mixed with early 70's Amon Duul II.

Those who have a passionate interest in the heavier aspects of vintage space rock and early krautrock should find this creation to be highly interesting. Nothing original or boundary-breaking present, but a very well made and high quality affair from start to finish.

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Send comments to Windhawk (BETA) | Report this review (#240912)
Posted Tuesday, September 22, 2009 | Review Permalink
Eetu Pellonpää
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Honorary Collaborator
4 stars The album "Nothing to Say" from this fine Peruvian psychedelic group starts with a powerful hypnotic presence, summoned by distant lady whispers. The energy of "Nueva Ola" starts to grow and find its shape with firm concentration, launching eventually for a long voyage to deep space. Following "Nothing to Say" kicks in with both rawer riff droning and streetwise singing, dominating also the following tracks. With this aspect of the group I agree with the comparisons to tones of La Ira De Dios, especially the cosmic stoner rock passages share qualities with their record "Archaeopterix". However on this album Serpentina Satélite ventures in my opinion to further realms of ethereal sound ambiences, and they do not have so strong emphasis towards straightforward punkish heavy sound than the band compared. Also the rawer guitars and chaotic sound textures remind slightly the noise explorations of Psychic Paramount. "The Last Drop" is more down tuned heavy blues, where the guitars gave to me associations from the sonic feelings of Earthless. Echo treatments enhance pleasantly the melancholic fuzzy overall sound. Next song "Madripoor" is both heaviest and most groovy of the tracks on the record, where the impressionistic psychedelic aural realm is enriched with classic cosmic space rock sound textures. Finally over twenty-three minutes long acid epic "Kommune 1" closes the album, swimming in most euphoric sea of aggressive heavy space rock aether. The long open waves roll in tow huge tides, bringing pleasant structure to the band's mutual flow of consciousness borne from constructive jamming and good sense of style. As final impression, I appreciated the detail, that the first song has whispering female vocals, three middle tracks are sung by male voices, and the final track has young child's reciting. This creates quite logical and human cycle to the album on conceptual level. I grabbed for myself the Trip in Time's vinyl reissue with enhanced front cover, and would recommend this stoned band for anybody open for heavy psychic trips.

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Send comments to Eetu Pellonpää (BETA) | Report this review (#519011)
Posted Saturday, September 10, 2011 | Review Permalink

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