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Causa Sui - Summer Sessions Vol. 3 CD (album) cover


Causa Sui

Psychedelic/Space Rock

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5 stars The Summer Sessions are something special. Far from being aimless jams, these are multi-layered compositions which reward repeated listening. The sound textures are drawn from the 60's and 70's, the most vital era of rock. Each Volume has its own character. While Volume 1 reminds us of Black Sabbath at their most progressive, Volume 2 adds an ecstatic layer of saxophone, making the competing melodies mindblowing. At times, it reminds one of Miles Davis' Electric band around the Jack Johnson era. Volume 3, I would argue, is the most thematically cohesive of the set. All of the compositions seems to be different variations on a basic melodic structure. The opening section of "Manifestations of Summer," "Lonely Traveller," is perhaps the most beautiful moment in the whole Summer Sessions. A poignant guitar riff interplays with a mellotron flute in a breathtaking melodic counterpoint that makes you think this is a lost Jefferson Airplane masterpiece, or perhaps an alternate reality in which Tony Iommi has joined the Moody Blues.

The lack of vocals on these recordings contributes to their fascination. They are sufficiently abstract to draw the listener into their mystery, and yet they "rock" in a way that brings the body into the listening experience.

I give this volume, and the whole set, five stars, because no one has done anything like this, and this is a significant and widely overlooked contribution to progressive music.

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Posted Saturday, August 20, 2011 | Review Permalink
5 stars The Summer Sessions are a set of three instrumental albums recorded in jamming sessions, although sometimes the music seems quite structured. The previous volumes are very good and worth listening(I rated them 4 stars), being the first a more spacey album and the second a heavier stoner rock complemented by a great saxophone playing, making it more jazzy. However Vol. 3 is a truly masterpiece of progressive and psychedelic music. Its the perfect closer to the Summer Sessions. If you are a fan of psychedelic and space rock it's impossible not liking it. The only downside of this album is that its too short. Only 33 minutes of such good music leaves you wanting much more. I almost rated it 4 stars because of that, but in the end I surrendered to it's geniality.

The album opens with "Eugenie". It starts with a spacey eguitar riff and develops with background keyboard and saxophone playing. The stoner rock guitar combines perfectly with the sax and the song ends with a great heavy guitar riff that accelerates with the bass and the drum while the sax keep soloing. Amazing song.

In "Red Valley" the sax and the keyboards go out and the show is left to the guitars. It also starts with a spacey guitar riff that suddenly turns with one guitar playing hard/stoner rock and the other soloing, sometimes with an effect of wind in the background that gives it a very stoner tone.

Side B is called "Manifestations of Summer" and it comprises three songs. It's the peak of all Summer Sessions.

"Lonesome Traveler" is the most spacey and progressive song on the album with the mellotron on the background fitting perfectly with the spacey riffs. Very trippy song.

"Santa Sangre" opens with very rythmic bass drumming while the guittar goes along with it, while another guitar does some spacey effects. But then the sax comes back more furious than before with amazing soloing and the drummer as furious as the sax makes his show. Spacey riffs are played shortly and the song fades to a lesser volume with the drums highlighted while the bass and some guitar and percussion effects are on the background. The song goes on a crescendo and when the sax returns soloing it accelerates towards the end just like "Eugenie", fading with wind sound linking it to the last song.

And finally "Venice at Sea" is the perfect closing song with a beautiful sea mood. It really translates the essence of the sea into music. I mean if you close your eyes while listening to it you can clearly see and listen to the waves. As a person who lives by the sea this song is very emotional to me. The guitar playing is psychedelic and beautiful. I don't know if music can be classified as beautiful, but I don't have any other word. It's aesthetically beautiful, you really can see colours and the sound waves. The spacey guitar is joined by the mellotron, wind sounds and backing vocals. Definitely my favourite part of the album and of whole Summer Sessions.

This album can be considere a masterpiece for those who really like psychedelic and space music and thats why I rated it 5 stars.

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Posted Thursday, September 20, 2012 | Review Permalink
3 stars Causa Sui make a case for their status as the Kyuss of Denmark with the third volume of their Summer Sessions releases. This series of albums consists of instrumental material culled from the band's jam sessions, which run the gamut from airy spacey psychedelic drifting to crunchy stoner rock. This time around, the album tends to err towards the spacier end of the group's sound except for on Red Valley, which essentially a Kyuss pastiche (right down to the name being a mashup of elements from Blues For the Red Sun and Welcome to Sky Valley). Enjoyable, but I can't say it's essential listening.
Report this review (#915888)
Posted Tuesday, February 19, 2013 | Review Permalink

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