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Trip Lava

Psychedelic/Space Rock

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Trip Lava Oddball In The Corner Pocket album cover
3.57 | 8 ratings | 7 reviews | 0% 5 stars

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Studio Album, released in 2007

Songs / Tracks Listing

1. Hit Single (4:37)
2. Hi Hat (3:15)
3. Glass Disco (1:53)
4. Flying Tremolo (5:34)
5. Gallop Light (3:09)
6. Flange Rock (3:03)
7. Kung Fu (0:50)
8. Floating (3:17)
9. Sirens (4:22)
10. Glass Disco Pt. 2 (2:25)
11. Gallop (2:04)
12. Squish (4:23)
13. Electro Glass Climax Pt. 2 (4:54)

Total Time 43:46

Line-up / Musicians

- Joel Lee / composer, performer

Releases information

CD self Released (2007, US)

Also released on Parallax Sounds (UK) and Sulatron Records (Austria) - Check out ( ) for more details.

Thanks to windhawk for the addition
and to Quinino for the last updates
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TRIP LAVA Oddball In The Corner Pocket ratings distribution

(8 ratings)
Essential: a masterpiece of progressive rock music(0%)
Excellent addition to any prog rock music collection(62%)
Good, but non-essential (38%)
Collectors/fans only (0%)
Poor. Only for completionists (0%)

TRIP LAVA Oddball In The Corner Pocket reviews

Showing all collaborators reviews and last reviews preview | Show all reviews/ratings

Collaborators/Experts Reviews

Review by Rivertree
4 stars Attention! 'Oddball In the Corner Pocket' picks you up to experience a rollercoaster trip through a very private psychedelic and krautrock realm. Joel Lee from Minnesota/US is the artist behind the project TRIP LAVA. He started to work on this in 2005 and is responsible for handling all the instruments you are able to detect. Besides the drums - which he also played for some other bands before - there are guitar, bass and keyboards respectively diverse electronics too. It took some time and effort until the TRIP LAVA debut finally could be released in 2007.

This album can be considered as one epic if you feel like - the 13 instrumental songs are blending into each other more or less. Just a compilation of improvisations - a collection of diversified impressions, grooving, acid, jazzy, eclectic, spacey. Lee's drum playing often accentuates the toms which gives the songs a tribal groove as for my impression. And this is surely one of the significant album elements - most of the songs have a special drive with repetititve patterns generated by drums and bass. First I would say the album is wrapped into some nice trippy tunes with nu jazz leanings - speaking of the opener Hit single and the last part of Electro Glass Climax PT.2 which are reminding me of the german band 'Beanfield'.

The crimsonesque Hi Hat must be mentioned here of course. This is a dramatic piece, appearing like a tension-filled complex parforce run - lots of overdubbed guitars - droning, riffing, soloing - swirling around in all directions. Impressing - great drum playing implemented too! Probably an interesting find for krautrock fans first of all Flying Tremelo and Gallop Light are striking because of a very experimental attitude - the heavy groove coupled with psychedelic guitars and weird synths. Some songs like Floatingand Sirens are made up more in a common spacey vein with backing synthesizer loops and acid guitar experiments. You will also detect weird speed variations, spooky electronic impressions here and there as well as diverse samples like sneezing babies and crashing porcelain for example.

All these aforementioned elements are put together following a well thought out plan I assume - but also with room enough for improvisation. Now that comes to a conclusion that 'Oddball In the Corner Pocket' is a really convincing song collection - cool stuff! It's worth it to reach for this album - definitely recommended to psych/space and krautrock lovers.

Review by DamoXt7942
FORUM & SITE ADMIN GROUP Avant/Cross/Neo/Post Teams
4 stars TRIP LAVA's Oddball in the Corner Pocket is, so to speak, a glass of whisky with various aroma.

A few years before, I've tasted Kinclaith, one kind of Scotch Whisky. Then I could enjoy various aroma from top note to finish - iodic, estery, gingery, and fruity. Joel Lee's solo project TRIP LAVA can exactly bear an improvised, individualistic and experimental space rock world. Believe me but his musical identity could remind me the taste of Kinclaith. In so much spacey and persistently repeated sounds are comfortable alterations and attractive beats. Indeed the aroma of Kinclaith is not always well-balanced, but I suggest this distillery should always be experimental and motivated - I love exactly the point and colourful flavour. Oddball in the Corner Pocket can let me feel just like Kinclaith whisky. Whatever happens, it's a pleasure for me to make sure what sound Joel should shoot at another moment. Furthermore, each song title is enjoyable. I always wonder which Glass Disco is...the Disco on a glass floor, or a fragile disco sound like glass. Yeah, I feel both. In spite of the title Flying Tremolo, there are heavy and percussive sounds as an earthquake or ground rumblin'. Kung Fu? Industrial ACHOO!s (a shout of Kung Fu) pop and jump here and there...? Very interesting. Absolutely sounds of Squish are in the song and raindrops-like sounds too.

Joel would, I guess, show various feelings and impressions all over the world on the disc.
Is this correct, Joel an Oddball? :-)

Review by Mellotron Storm
3 stars 3.5 stars. TRIP LAVA is the one man project of Joel Lee. He's obviously a fan of progressive and experimental music. Drums and guitar are prominanat but we also get loops, drones, samples and other sounds. We get 13 shortish (is that a word ?) tracks with some blending into each other. I must say I found this quite enjoyable, especially this morning as I drove into work on this warm and hazy day. It's all instrumental.

We get a beat fairly quickly on the opening track "Hit Single" as processed guitar makes some noise. It gets pretty intense after 3 minutes. Cool ending as it sounds like a whistle from a train. "Hi Hat" features guitar and cymbals before the drums come in. "Glass Disco" is intense throughout and it ends with glass breaking all over the place. "Flying Tremolo" is mostly drums and guitar while "Gallop Light" has this cool beat with the focus on the drums. It settles 2 1/2 minutes in then it sounds like a jet taking off. "Flange Rock" has a good rhythm as other sounds join in. "Kung Fu" is the shortest tune at less than a minute.

"Floating" has this beat with spacey sounds. Guitar comes in then this pulsating hum takes over. "Sirens" is a good one with so much going on.The guitar is good too. Low drones end it. "Glass Disco Pt.2" sounds like a lot of drums and percussion, probably electronics too. "Gallop" has some prominant drumming in it as the guitar comes in making noise. "Squish" is all about the beat. Sounds like bass too. Sirens come in after 4 minutes as the beat stops. "Electro Glass Climax Pt.2" opens with drums and there's lots going on. Guitar comes in at 1 1/2 minutes. This is excellent. My favourite track. It settles before 3 minutes.The sound then goes from speaker to speaker, faster and faster. A pretty cool way to end it.

Fans of Psychedelic music should check this "oddball" out.

Review by philippe
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator
4 stars If you think that the extravagant-psychedelic chapter of music culture is definitely dissolved you should give a serious listen on this first album published under the name trip lava. It has been conceived, released and performed by the guitarist, multi-instrumentalist Joel Lee. The musical universe of Trip Lava is a bombastic hybrid of styles, exclusively instrumental, dominated by stoned groovy guitar sequences, molecular-cosmic noises, spacey synth moves and surrounded by RPI avant garde flavour . Hit single is a an agitated-hallucinogenic trip featuring obsessional rythms and driven drum pulses. The hypno-minimal-menacing progression reminds me a few things released by weird french electronic bands (Lard Free, Heldon). Hi Hat carries on a cerebral-atonal instrumental that turns into psych madness. Glass Disco is an hyper-active / schizo acid jam including buzzing looped guitars and a lot of cosmic effects. Some tracks contain evident references to comsic-kraut dementia but admit much more emphasise on loud-garagey-corrosive sounds. Glass Disco part 1 & 2 are my favourites: incredibly tranced out guitar pieces with minimalist influences (Terry Riley...). Electro Glass Climax part 2 closes the album with this typical maniacal-hypnotic-savage rockin guitars that are the real signature of the project. Oddball in th corner pocket is a courageous, inventive album which resurrects in a contemporary way the vibrant imagery, sounds and colours of vintage psychedelic space music.
Review by Windhawk
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator
3 stars US-based musician Joel Lee most certainly takes his listeners on a trip with his Trip Lava project; in a manner that suggests that tripping while examining it or at least being familiar with that experience is an advantage to decode his psychedelic excursions here.

Cascades of droning sounds, slowly changing or abruptly evolving noise patterns and a dominant dissonant expression are key elements in these escapades; while some key elements remains mostly unchanged if not through an entire track then at least one stable factor is present in all segments. That the red thread may be a swirling, fluctuating light keyboard or guitar layer far back in the soundscape or a siren-like guitar wail just as well as a driving bass theme or energetic drums can make it taxing to find something to hold on to while immersing oneself in this venture though.

If this isn't already a given conclusion: We're dealing with freaked out, far out music here; instrumental and improvisational. And those who enjoy the more experimental acts in the early Krautrock-movement as well as fans of artists like Magikal Power Mako should take note of this album - as they should be a core target audience for this specific production.

Review by Conor Fynes
3 stars 'Oddball In The Corner Pocket' - Trip Lava (6/10)

'Oddball In The Corner Pocket' is a musical journey that is quite fresh to my ears. Although I have great respect for the legends of psychedelia and even an invested- albeit limited- interest in some of the more obscure acts who seek to plunge their listeners down the proverbial rabbit hole, multi-instrumentalist Joel Lee's Trip Lava is a band that makes music that I am not all that used to, so I think hearing this has opened up some doors for me. This is the work of one man whose mission statement in music seems to be experimenting with different rhythms, and pulling out different ideas from his subconscious through improvisation. As a result, the music here is very loose, and true to what I anticipated, Trip Lava does get lost in its own self-indulgence from time to time. Despite the inherent feeling of aimlessness that this improvised music gives though, Lee's creative use of textures and arrangement makes 'Oddball In The Corner Pocket' an engaging experience.

What I'm hearing here generally consists of simple acoustic drums, noodlings on guitar, and enough spacey effects to convince Timothy Leary that it's time for rehab. These tracks on 'Oddball' are not necessarily 'songs', but rather running jams where Lee is free to experiment with different textures. Most of these jams get packed into deep grooves, and it tends to create a hypnotic effect. Arguably Lee's greatest strength here is his use of effects and computer wizardry. While the guitars and drums are effective, they are rarely anything special, and the musicianship never really impresses me beyond par. Its his ability to create shimmering walls of sound that gets the magic going for the music here.

Its obvious positive aspects aside, 'Oddball In The Corner Pocket' is a very imperfect album. None of these tracks really compliment each other; instead, it feels like these are mostly a little too alike. There was some decent shock to hear the throbbing bass work and trippy space sounds and flange, but by the end of the album, one becomes a little too familiar with what the album has to offer. For an album calling itself experimental, there is really not much variety on it. The one running sound that Joel Lee has crafted here is really intriguing, but it does feel as if the album could have used a track or two to break up the freak-out jams.

'Oddball In The Corner Pocket' is an uncompromising and strange piece of art, and its made all the more exciting due to my limited experience with any like-sounding music. It is a somewhat rough album, but it delivers what it promises.

Review by siLLy puPPy
COLLABORATOR PSIKE, JR/F/Canterbury & Eclectic Teams
4 stars I've listened to my share of psychedelic rock over the years ranging from the cutesy psychedelic pop of the 60s to the hardcore acid blotter's club that takes all the extremes to the max, so it's always wickedly wild to discover something that's totally new and unlike anything else i've ever experienced! Such is the case with the Minnesota based psychedelic and progressive rock artist TRIP LAVA which is actually the solo project of musical madman and multi-instrumentalist Joel Lee. This is basically one of those labor of love projects and it shows in all its eccentricity and attention to details. While TRIP LAVA's output has been sparse over the years, the absurd quality of the extreme head trips to be experienced are beyond belief!

ODDBALL IN THE CORNER POCKET is the first release which emerged in 2007 after a two year series of recording sessions. This album is basically a compilation of all the improvised 4-track jams of this period which utilized real drums, guitar, bass, synthesizers and many drones and loops all mixed together in bizarre rhythmic AND arrhythmic ways. Different riffing sessions, bass grooves and drumming patterns were selected, arranged and tied together with myriad sound effects and then implemented strange sonic segues to tie it all together and create on continual piece of music. While the tracks are quite clearly individual, they are tied together by bizarre electronica freakery that provides as the sinew to create a larger listening experience.

First of all, i have to acknowledge that this is music for hardcore psychedelia addicts. Too many bands for far too long have relied on the overused and abused Pink Floyd paradigm for their entire musical outlook. TRIP LAVA is something else altogether. This musical project derives from serious music nerd moments that implement some of the most fascinating juxtapositions of ideas that one could imagination. The 13 tracks on ODDBALL IN THE CORNER POCKET may be all over the place psychedelically speaking but every single track is accessible for the first time listener in that it has a steady beat, groovy bass line and are basically, well rhythmically speaking, compositions in total freeform jamming mode. But that is where the normalcy ceases to exist.

While easily perceived rhythms and grooves exist, the rest of the musical elements are literally spaced out beyond belief. The first impression i got when listening to TRIP LAVA was that one of Lee's influences clearly had to be Achim Reichel as some of the subtle time signature changes and overlapping of slightly off grooves that incrementally fall out of sync and drift into chaos is straight out of the 'Die Gr'ne Reise' playbook from Reichel's A.R. & Machines days. While the Krautrock vibe doesn't come through in the overall compositional style, it certainly does in all the tricks and trinkets used in the subtle timbres, tones and synchronizations. Also, this is clearly a product of the 21st century with excellent production (especially for a 4-track) and quite trippy indeed how everything ties together.

On ODDBALL IN THE CORNER POCKET you will experience energetic rock jams that for the most part utilize steady and heavy drumming patterns, very busy bass grooves and repetitive rock guitar riffing that find themselves the dominate factor for moments and then drowned out by many layers of electronic accoutrements. There is usually an atmospheric drone, some sort of reverb, flange or other effects and just plain weird sound effects. Don't let the word 'repetitive' fool you either. There are many details paid to progressive touches that mix up time signatures, phrasing and musical motifs overall. But remember that everything is laid out in a logical manner and quite subtle in its unfolding. This could easily be just as meditative as it is an active listening experience. The best of both worlds. Personally TRIP LAVA hits my spot for some sort of progressive rock meets psytrance type of experience and even this early primeval debut of this style of music works for me quite well. Welcome to tripper's paradise in the 21st century!

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