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Motorpsycho Phanerothyme album cover
4.16 | 143 ratings | 4 reviews | 36% 5 stars

Excellent addition to any
prog rock music collection

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Studio Album, released in 2001

Songs / Tracks Listing

1. Bedroom Eyes (2:18)
2. For Free (5:13)
3. B.S. (3:41)
4. Landslide (4:38)
5. Go to California (8:00)
6. Painting the Night Unreal (6:35)
7. The Slow Phaseout (4:30)
8. Blindfolded (3:44)
9. When You're Dead (4:52)

Total Time: 43:31

Line-up / Musicians

- Bent Sæther / bass, vocals, guitars, piano, harmonium, Mellotron, percussion, Viscount organ
- Hans Magnus "Snah" Ryan / guitars, vocals, Rhodes piano, ARP, SidStation, electric harmonium, Viscount organ, percussion, lap-steel
- Håkon Gebhardt / drums, vocals, banjo, percussion, zither, guitars, glockenspiel, lap-steel

- Helge "Deathprod" Sten / audio virus, Echoplex, filters, theremin, percussion
- Baard Slagsvold / piano, vocals, Mellotron, clavinette, Hammond organ
- Øyvind Fossheim / violin
- Vegard Johnsen / violin
- André Orvik / violin
- Hans Morten Stensland / violin
- Jon W. Sønstebø / viola
- Anne Britt Søvig Årdal / cello
- Ketil Vestrum Einarsen / flute
- Lars Horntveth / tenor sax and bass clarinette
- Anne-Grethe Orvik / oboe
- Even Skatrud Andersen / trombone
- Mathias Eick / trumpet and flugelhorn
- Line Horntveth / tuba

Releases information

Artwork: Kim Hiorthøy

CD Columbia COL 5044392 (2001 Norway)
CD Cornflakes Zoo CORN 04 (2001 France)
CD Stickman Records PSYCHOBABBLE 033 (2001 Germany)
CD P-Vine Records PCD-23451 (2001 Japan) (promo)
CD Stickman Records PSYCHOBABBLE 033, 4015698 0558-2 (2001 Germany)
LP Stickman Records PSYCHOBABBLE 033 (2001 Germany)
LP Stickman Records PSYCHOBABBLE 033 (2010 Germany)

Thanks to windhawk for the addition
and to Quinino for the last updates
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MOTORPSYCHO Phanerothyme ratings distribution

(143 ratings)
Essential: a masterpiece of progressive rock music(36%)
Excellent addition to any prog rock music collection(43%)
Good, but non-essential (15%)
Collectors/fans only (5%)
Poor. Only for completionists (1%)

MOTORPSYCHO Phanerothyme reviews

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

Collaborators/Experts Reviews

Review by BrufordFreak
COLLABORATOR Heavy Prog & JR/F/Canterbury Teams
5 stars Here's an album that I just stumbled upon when I was researching music for a two radio show on busy-man Ketil Vestrum Einarsen. I've always liked Motorpsycho, but I only discovered them in 2010 with Heavy Metal Fruit. I've never made time to backtrack into their voluminous discography--until now! And, wow! Am I glad I did! The band wasn't always so grungy, so heavy! They were actually light, diversified, folkie, and humorous! What a surprise! This is such a fun album to listen to--so many fun songs from such a variety of styles--and so much less treatment of the instruments and Bent's lead voice.

1. "Bedroom Eyes" (2:18) gentle folk rock with great Beatles-like melody. (4.5/5)

2. "For Free" (5:13) rocking with that chunky bass, this is more like the electric Dylan imitators--though lighter and bouncier than Dylan. Great engineering with beautiful orchestral support. The instrumental section is definitely the best--where everything comes shining through. A song that really grew on my with repeated listens. (8.75/10)

3. "B.S." (3:41) opens with a 1960/70s sound and feel. I love Bent's unadulterated, vulnerable vocal. Great instrumental section in the second minute--kind of Jimmy Webb/Burt Bacharach. Nostalgic yet fresh and so enjoyable. This sounds more like the upbeat, poppy side of countrymates BROTHER APE. (9/10)

4. "Landslide" (4:38) orchestral opening gives way to BLIND FAITH-like acoustic guitar, piano and vocal. Bass and drums join in for the second verse. A different lead vocalist for this one. Quirky and funny--like an early prog song--a cross between CSN and early solo Paul McCartney. Great composition with great engineering and vocal harmonies and awesome orchestral arrangements. The instrumental finish is the best. (8.75/10)

5. "Go to California" (8:01) Like an experimental Brian Wilson piece. After the a cappella vocal opening, a great pulsing beat is established with upbeat guitar and keyboard-supported chord sequence. Love the playful flute flitting in and out of the song's vocal and instrumental lines. Great vocal arrangements for the collective throughout--culminating with a great chorus. Big key shift in the third minute leads into a DOORS-like "Riders on the Storm" heavily-treated electric piano solo in the fourth and fifth minutes. I would go so far as to say that the band is fully intentional with its imitation and even replication of some of THE DOORS' soli in this instrumental section--both Fender Rhodes and electric guitar. But it's done so well, so tastefully--one of the best, most respectful and yet inspired "covers" I've ever heard. (19/20)

6. "Painting the Night Unreal" (6:31) slow, late night jazz; sounds like something George Harrison would have done impromptu with a lounge jazz combo. Another different lead vocal style here--a more gentle, sensitive vocal approach. Nice, confident (ballsy) composition. In the fifth minute it gets dirty and grungy as the singer shifts into a raspy screaming voice à la Paul McCartney in some of his more forceful vocal performances. Could be Spirit or another one of the blues-rock proto-prog bands of the 1960s. (8.75/10)

7. "The Slow Phaseout" (4:30) Nice Jane's Addiction/Porno For Pyros-like song. Great chorus. Once again, the instrumental passages are so magical, so subtly sophisticated. Such great composers! (Funny video, guys, with that all-female cover band sitting in your places.) (8.75/10)

8. "Blindfolded" (3:44) soft picked acoustic guitars and piano support easy-going Steve Winwood-like vocal performance. Great rhythm tracks and orchestral support. What amazing arranging/composition skills! Plus a great vocal/lyrical performance. Definitely a top three song for me among a whole album of great songs. (9.25/10)

9. "When You're Dead" (4:52) twangy electric guitar, banjo and horn provide opening weave but are totally supplanted by acoustic guitar when gentle whispery vocal enters. Nice melodies, but I don't like the chorus--a bit abrasive and messy with so many instruments joining in all at once: it's almost startling! Great trumpet solo over such a beautiful passage in the third minute--once again, such great orchestral support. I;m torn: there are parts I LOVE yet parts that irritate me. (8.75/10)

Total Time: 43:31

Single release bonus: "Go to California" (3:11) Like an experimental Brian Wilson piece. After the a cappella vocal opening, a great pulsing beat is established with upbeat guitar and keyboard-supported chord sequence. Love the playful flute flitting in and out of the song's vocal and instrumental lines. Great vocal arrangements for the collective throughout--culminating with a great chorus. (9/10)

B+/4.5 stars; a near-masterpiece of progressive rock music--despite being rather imitative of the 1960s proto-prog era of music, these compositions are so masterful as to supercede anything that has come before. This album is such a delight, such an amazing display of compositional genius, that I just have to bump it up as a five star masterpiece!

Definitely my favorite Motorspycho album I've ever heard--and an instigator to further explorations of the band's past. I'm just blown away!

Review by Dapper~Blueberries
4 stars Immediately after the release of Let Them Eat Cake, Motorpsycho would start work on their next album, continuing on with their more psychedelic rock efforts. As heterogeneous as the band is, their next effort, while keeping true to their new sound and stylizations, would be a lot different than what may be expected. Where Let Them Eat Cake was their tribute to old progressive rock bands from the 70s, this album feels like a tribute to the 60s psych rock era lead by groups like The Beatles, Jefferson Airplane, Pink Floyd, and The Doors. This results in the creation of Phanerothyme.

Phanerothyme, to me, is the perfection of that psychedelic pop rock sound that Let Them Eat Cake gave us. Each song here gives off this great mix of jam rock, neo psychedelia that bands like King Gizz and Thee Oh Sees would inevitably use later in the 21st century, sunshine pop, and rockabilly, creating for a very jovial sounding album. Songs like B.S. and The Slow Phaseout give off these styles very prominently, and I really love that about this album. It is insanely varied across the board and creates for a unique take on the Motorpsycho stylings.

There are also slower winded songs, which I think are nice. These songs are a lot more folk and acoustic in vein, kinda like Bob Dylan or Neal Young. When You're Dead and Bedroom Eyes are good songs in the retrospect of slower, more methodical movements. The band really does allow themselves to take a step back from the jamming and embrace their more procrastinating side. Unfortunately I find these slower songs to be not the best when compared to the more jammy songs. I feel as though they put far more time in their jams rather than these slower movements, and that is quite a shame since they could really make this album a five star masterpiece if they put a tiny bit more into their slower movements. Luckily these slow songs are only really in the second half of the record (besides Bedroom Eyes) after Go to California.

Speaking of which, I love, love, LOVE, Go to California. This is a fabulous tribute to The Beach Boys and their psychedelic pop sound from the late 60s. The nod and wink to California is the clear indication, but the rhythm, and the instrumentation makes this sound like a clear cut tribute to that sunny band from Cali. You get tastes of the more surf rock sound with some of the guitar strums, the more psychedelic flavorings with the use of more abstract stylizations, and the clear focus of jamming that The Beach Boys can lightly do when need be. This is my favorite song off the album, and I think it deserves a ton of love and praise from both progheads and popheads as it stands to be a wonderful tribute to Brian Wilson's work with The Beach Boys.

As it stands, Phanerothyme is an interesting, and really well made psychedelic effort from Motorpsycho. Tributes to The Beach Boys and the psychedelic sounds of the 60s, a lot of focus on jamming and creating a grooving atmosphere, and a great hippie vibe that makes this album feel as though it was made in the 60s but suddenly time traveled into the 2000s. It is one of the band's most solid, and memorable efforts from their 2000s works. Highly recommend it, especially for fans of bands like Jefferson Airplane, and Procol Harum.

Latest members reviews

4 stars After hearing an awful lot how versatile Motorpsycho are and listening to, admittedly, a few of their latter-day albums and finding them at a heavy prog/classic rock mood, I decided to take a shot in the dark and just pick at random an album of their back repertoire. Boy I am glad I did. What ... (read more)

Report this review (#1371816) | Posted by Progrussia | Sunday, February 22, 2015 | Review Permanlink

4 stars Progressive Psychedelic Folk Mainly from this work, Motorpsycho musical swerved in his career, risky and ambitious. Welcome and smart on my part. Obviously for many of his fans was musical heresy. Acoustic, melodic, structured, with a good dose of rock and electric guitars. With good participa ... (read more)

Report this review (#984711) | Posted by sinslice | Sunday, June 23, 2013 | Review Permanlink

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