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Flying Saucer Attack - Further CD (album) cover


Flying Saucer Attack

Post Rock/Math rock

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4 stars I'm very happy to see FSA here. If you are into psych-folk, you will go crazy for this album. What it is is a collection of trippy acoustic songs on pastoral themes sung in a sleepy voice that sound like they were recorded on a four-track. Then layers of guitar noise and feedback are added over top to make one of the most brain-numbing experiences you can have. It really is something. Some later albums dropped the acoustic folk thing for an entirely electric sound. There are also a couple of guitar-noise instrumentals ("Rainstorm Blues"). FSA really demonstrated what could be done sonically with just a guitar and a couple of pedals...amazing stuff. But if you are offended by feedback, stay away. If you are adventurous and like psychedelia or acid-folk, you will love this.
Report this review (#44089)
Posted Wednesday, August 24, 2005 | Review Permalink
Prog Folk Researcher
1 stars Well this is my second Flying Saucer Attack album. The first I have an excuse for since I found it in a used record store and had no idea what I was getting into. This time is my own fault since I did know what they sounded like but still didn’t resist buying this in another used record store almost a decade later. My bad.

I guess this one isn’t as horrible as the debut, which is just gawd-awful acoustic-and- feedback tripe scratched onto four tape tracks with a dull fingernail or broken glass or something. Truly dreadful.

This one isn’t that bad, but it’s nothing I’d go out of my way to try and find. There’s some acoustic guitar, some electric guitar feedback, some poorly-done sound effects, and occasional vocals that are kind of like a flat Bryan-Ferry-meets-that-guy-from- Icehouse (for some reason every time I hear a slightly-bored, slightly-creepy, mostly- dull male vocal set to bad prog music I can’t resist comparing it to Icehouse – now that was some terrible music!).

The production quality is somewhat better this time around, and I guess the girl that was in the ‘band’ is gone so it’s back to being a solo act again. Hard to make a relationship work on bad post-rock and sonic feedback alone, I suppose.

So anyway, the songs are all about the same: some slow and fairly mild (usually acoustic) guitar lead-in; slowly building and phasing in feedback to a point where that’s all you can hear; maybe a few cheap sound-effects like wrinkled tin foil to simulate rain; then some sort of disjointed ending. Sounds like this is all done on four tracks like the first one was. Pretty sparse in the artwork and packaging too. “To the Shore” sounds like at least an attempt at something more complex, but ends up dragging on too long with an endless guitar repetition regardless. The only mildly interesting tracks are “Come and Close my Eyes” with an acoustic back line that persists and kind of gives the composition some grounding; and “Still Point”, where the vocalist manages to appear at least interested for a couple minutes. The rest is completely forgettable. This is not some hidden gem; it's just obscure because it deserves to be.

I’m sure this is a nice guy, or at least I don’t have any reason to think he isn’t anyway. But this music is incredibly simple, undeveloped, and unimaginative. I think he’s just sitting in his apartment with a tape machine and a couple pedals and moping about his girlfriend the bass player leaving him. Get over it dude. One star.


Report this review (#106083)
Posted Friday, January 5, 2007 | Review Permalink
5 stars It took me a couple of goes to get into FSA. Dave Pearce does rather like to scare you off - anybody who heard his cover of Wire's Outdoor Miner, most recently anthologised on that Domino Records sampler, will have found themselves wondering exactly whose bright idea it was to filter out the entire low end, leaving some guitar noise, hi-hats and not much more than the breath on Dave's vocals.

The formula for Further is quite simple - pastoral melancholy on acoustic guitar meets great sweeping washes of guitar feedback. A veritable orgy of psychedelic loveliness ensues. There are variations - opener Rainstorm Blues just has the feedback, plus a bit of unidentified rustling; various sections of the longer tracks strip back much of the noise. The genius is in the details. At times the washes are gentle and harmonic, euphoric in that way that Sigur Ros have made famous with their cavernous reverbs and e-bows. On Here Am I, however, it gets noisier and noisier, and is ultimately distinctly unnerving and physically uncomfortable at the moment it cuts off suddenly.

There's not much more to describe, really. It's worth noting that, in spite of no particular change in Pearce's working methods (ie, everything is still done in his house near Bristol on a cheap four-track), this is a fantastic sounding record. Unlike that Wire cover, there is bass. When everything's going full blast, there's no frequency range left unexplored. There's a real total feel to it - if you were going to have a religious experience, there would be far worse platters to stick on while doing so.

Absolutely magnificent.

Report this review (#157592)
Posted Thursday, January 3, 2008 | Review Permalink
Prog Sothoth
Prog Metal Team
4 stars Flying Saucer Attack's Further combines borderline abrasive sheets of drone and guitar feedback with delicate folk melodies and soft, echoey vocals, forming haunting tunes that evoke a disorienting and vast atmosphere. It's like being lost on some barren breezy landscape at dusk.

The album begins with "Rainstorm Blues", an eerie instrumental that practically sounds like flying saucers hovering over some field deciding what sort of crop circles to make as a storm gathers in the distance. The vocal tracks follow, and this combination of gentle melodies swathed in blankets of din create this shoegaze effect that heightens the sense of isolation provided by the dreamy, detached singing of David Pearce. Co-member Rachel Brook gets her own spacey vocal showcase for "Still Point", resulting anan even dreamier track than the norm regarding this album. There's also the long instrumental "To the Shore" that's like some psychedelic journey across rocky shorelines draped with fog.

Yes I'm throwing in lots of landscape metaphors here simply because that's the sort of sonic impression I get from this. The levels of noise never get too jarring or violent, but this certainly isn't the kind of stuff you'd hear at The Newport Folk Festival or something. The production may have been recorded in a lo-fi manner, but it still sounds quite excellent with a wide scope-like effect.

Predating much of post-rock and the whole 'blackgaze' scene, it could be seen as an influence on both, although this group generally flew under the radar like flying saucers tend to do themselves, so maybe it's just more of a coincidence that this album contains obvious attributes utilized so thoroughly by later acts. Either way, just zone out and enjoy the waves.

Report this review (#1067852)
Posted Sunday, October 27, 2013 | Review Permalink

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