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Mantric Muse

Psychedelic/Space Rock

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Mantric Muse Mantric Muse album cover
4.22 | 75 ratings | 6 reviews | 25% 5 stars

Excellent addition to any
prog rock music collection

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Studio Album, released in 2012

Songs / Tracks Listing

1. Nanoid (7:28)
2. Sindbad S°fareren (7:52)
3. Cinope (7:42)
4. Sfunx (10:27)
5. Azur (7:24)
6. Gnoxience (4:34)
7. Deep Sea Cheops (10:19)

Total Time: 55:46

Line-up / Musicians

- Magnus Hannibal / guitar, synth
- Michael Kroglund / bass
- S°ren Hvilsby / drums, e-drums

Releases information

2xLP Adansonia Records ‎- 001 (2013, Germany)

CD Transubstans Records ‎- TRANS102 (2012, Sweden)

Thanks to rivertree for the addition
and to Quinino for the last updates
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Buy MANTRIC MUSE Mantric Muse Music

MANTRIC MUSE Mantric Muse ratings distribution

(75 ratings)
Essential: a masterpiece of progressive rock music(25%)
Excellent addition to any prog rock music collection(30%)
Good, but non-essential (33%)
Collectors/fans only (7%)
Poor. Only for completionists (5%)

MANTRIC MUSE Mantric Muse reviews

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

Collaborators/Experts Reviews

Review by Rivertree
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator / Band Submissions
4 stars What a surprise, Mantric Muse are back on track with their (debut!?) album in 2012. This band is hailing from Copenhagen and started around 1998, has produced and released one EP at the very beginning, then some years later played an important part in contributing to the birth of the Oresund Space Collective in the person of Magnus Hannibal (guitar, synth), bassist Michael Kroglund and Ola Eriksson (synth/keys). All have been steady OSC members afterwards during several years, including the band's peak (so far) while reaping black tomatoes on extended journeys through time and space.

Supported by drummer S°ren Holm Hvilsby they are back to the roots now with an album which truly is worth a listen. Well, a damn grooving thing this is, what marks the affinity to OSC first and foremost. And then add some pinches of Ozric Tentacles respectively Quantum Fantay (the synths for example) and finally merge this with the creativeness of My Brother The Wind ... voila, that's it if you want to know how I would describe the album's framework conditions more or less.

Seven songs are given, extracted from a large catalogue of jams, which have been mapped, dissected and then re-created into parts which are rarely crossing the ten minute mark. Thus basically there is more structure and diversity to discover if one should intend to compare with OSC albums. The longest tracks Sfunx and Deep Sea Cheops turn out to be the highlights for me - yeah, it sounds like they've got the monopoly on the groove here, instruments are playfully deployed, twists and turns included, really really entertaining.

Now that leads to the conclusion that Mantric Muse are bringing some new spirit to the scene, definitely. Released on Transubstans Records this self-titled album features top-notch space rock including driving drums, fat bass lines, swirling synths and sizzling guitars - hence a must have for genre connoisseurs.

Review by tszirmay
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator
5 stars Intrigued by both the deliciously vivid cover (Yeah Rocky, that trick does work!) as well as the 2 reviews I had read up to now from spacemeister Rivertree and Kingsnake, I embarked on the galactic journey to search for this tantalizing celestial asteroid of sound. Recently, perhaps due to the recent passing of my father, I have been attracted to interplanetary sonics from Moonwagon (Finland), Pymlico (Norway), Giorgio C. Neri (Italy), Centric Jones (USA) and now the Danes from Mantric Muse!

This is a killer recording, closer perhaps to Ozric Tentacles and instrumental classic Gong (Hillage era) than say Hawkwind. The sounds detected are highly warp-speed groove oriented with bassist Michael Kroglund carving the deepest seismic furrows a la Zia Geelani, kept into auto-gyro mode by proton drummer Soren Holm Hvilsby, making sure there is no deviation from the flight plan. Guitarist Magnus Hannibal and keysman Ola Eriksson interweave intensely, both firing off an array of 'lasersonic' weapons that sizzle into the outermost horizons. Chirping, bubbly and tortuous, the synths offer a kaleidoscope of sounds and textures that keeps the listener on edge and enthralled. The guitar work is far from slick (like Ozric leader Ed Wynne) as Magnus prefers some filthier tone selections that run the gamut from Hendrix and Moonwagon's Joni Tiala to sweeter lines like Hillage and even Hackett. All the tracks have the same premise, a voyage until you drop from exhaustion, with no syrupy ballads to sweeten the mood, just wham-bam, compulsive interplanetary travel.

On a track like the comically titled 'Spunx', the intrepid audionaut is phasered into submission, as the material is obsessively funky and alternatively beastly. Hannibal does some serious growling here, as Eriksson liberates his synthesizers to roam freely, a startling contrast of brilliant sonic stars exploding in front of the windscreen, propelled viscerally by the fanatical rhythm section. On 'Azur' the sky is blue, the sea is green, fluffy white clouds and streaming panoramas abound, the adventure profound, merciless and ultimately very satisfying. Check out the thinly veiled humor, with titles like 'Deep Sea Cheops' (awwww!) and 'Gnoxience'!

One of the main attractions of the space/psychedelic genre is the unceremonious sense of escape and timeless travel it so proudly proposes, no flirtation with current fads or more acceptable forms of popular music. Plus its perfect driving music, slip the disc into the car stereo (my 2 door Honda Civic 2012 spacecraft has 6 speakers, yum!), set the controls to the heart of the sun and boom, turn on the ignition, head on down the highway and be a star. Vrooooom! Flying through rural Alberta farmland with clear blue skies and no discernable traffic, this is as close to navigating heaven's earthly corridors one can find.

5 Repetitive Ruminations

Review by Warthur
4 stars Instrumental space rock in the Ozric Tentacles mode is a tricky prospect - after all, one might point out that the Ozrics themselves have more or less worn that niche into dust. However, Mantric Muse do an excellent job on this debut album of establishing themselves as a space rock force to be reckoned with. 20 years of honing your chops through live gigs will help with that, of course, as does the band's clear understanding of the space rock tradition that they share with the Ozrics - there's more than a few moments which suggest that the band have been listening carefully to You-era Gong as well.
Review by Aussie-Byrd-Brother
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator
5 stars Instrumental space-rockers Mantric Muse have answered all our prayers to the alien gods! I'm sure we've all seen plenty of grumbles and complaints about how disappointing the last several Ozric Tentacles albums have been (for the record, they're not actually that bad!), and how `they don't make them like they used to'. Well, on the strength of this self-titled album, clearly they do, its just a different band that's offering us the goods now! Formed in Denmark in 1998, an initial early EP `Picks in Space' (see what they did there, people?!) employed a female vocalist, but 2004 eventually saw parts of the band morph into the Oresund Space Collective. Finally in 2012 we have a proper full-length self-titled release after many years hard work, and it's everything space-cadet listeners could wish for.

The compositions here are all taken originally from live jams, then worked on in the studio to achieve the best results. It pays off brilliantly, giving the pieces a tight and focused approach without missing out on the spontaneous and live energy that produced the music in the first place. The band incorporate world music elements, ethnic flavours, wig-out swirling synth soloing, pulsing bass grooves, loose and ragged electric guitar, and an assortment of live and programmed drum-work throughout seven varied pieces. It's a beautiful, flowing and thrilling fully intrumental experience. It would actually be cool to see the `all improvs, all the time' Oresund Space Collective try this method once in a while too.

While any Ozrics fan could safely pick up this album and be instantly comforted by what they find, there are many unique differences that make the Mantric Muse stand on their own. Instantly an aspect that appeals to me is a much more tasteful electric guitar sound, guitarist Magnus Hannibal never resorting to that somewhat dated 80's metal, shreddy Vai/Satriani sound that I've always had occasional problems with on the Ozrics albums. The synths here are also more subdued, happy to coast along without needing to quickly shoot off in all directions, and the band also perfect a better mix of programmed and live percussion, with more exciting drum patterns than anything heard on the last several Ozric Tentacles albums.

Most of the tracks are never in a hurry, they effortlessly unfold and help the listener float away. `Sindbad Sofareren' and `Azur' offer plenty of middle-eastern mysticism, the first with twisting hypnotic dervish guitars, purring bass, loungey-jazz vibes and early 70's Floyd mellowness, the latter with some ferocious snarling feedback-laden guitar mania and genie-bottle synth mischief. `Cinope' contrasts unease with uplifting moods. A dazzling mix of tempo-changes, tribal voices, racing moves back and forth between programmed dancey beats and commanding live drums. Reverb/delay-drenched guitars are charged with scorching fire one second, then atmospheric and emotional the next. The most gentle of synths are underwater ripples for a moment, groaning whirlpool chasms soon after, and always shimmering.

`Sfunx' gently unfolds over 10 minutes, blissful and laid-back synth clouds working up a trance-like state around frantic rapid-fire drum-work and nimble bass, with a beautiful come-down ending. The crystalline `Gnoxience' weaves droning synth loops around chittering effects that call to mind unknown alien worlds or the deepest of unexplored jungles. `Deep Sea Cheops' has a dirty slow bass groove over chiming delay-fueled spiralling electric guitar runs within ambient electronics.

Fans of the Ozrics, `You'-era Gong, Hidria Spacefolk and Quantam Fantay can add another band to that list of superb space-rockers. Mantric Muse have released a joyous cosmic trip, a truly sublime psychedelic instrumental work that perfectly balances vintage and modern influences, and listeners now have the perfect soundtrack for their next deep-space journey. Sheer space-rock perfection to my ears.

Five stars.

Review by Progfan97402
5 stars A band I should have heard about a couple years back when their debut LP was released. Actually this isn't their debut release, as an EP in 1998 called Picks in Space was released, but that one seems forgotten in time. Why the long gap between releases? Well, these guys did help form ěresund Space Collective, so I know that's been taking up so much of their time. I've heard many bands being compared to Ozric Tentacles, like Hidria Spacefolk to Korai Ír÷m, but those groups seemed to have their own identity not to mistake them for the Ozrics. The Greek band Tidal Flood most definitely sounded like the Ozrics, sadly they never passed releasing an EP called Scientific. So comes Mantric Muse. I am just amazed! I think they're even better than Tidal Flood, and just as good as the Ozrics at their best. Sometimes the Ozrics can be a bit much, Ed Wynne's guitar playing often threatens to drown out the rest of the music (you can often notice the synthesizers and sometimes flute trying to compete, even if some of the synth work is from Ed himself), guitarist Magnus Hannibal isn't quite so over-the-top. Swedish keyboardist Ola Eriksson really gives us great spacy synths in the Ozric grand tradition, and while the techno influence is there, isn't as pronounced as the Ozrics frequently are (I know some Ozric fans have been bothered by the more techno direction they've been headed since Waterfall Cities, or if not, since Brandi hopped on board). You can almost imagine Ola Eriksson being an Ozric member, if the Ozrics were not now a family band. I also really highly recommend this to those who felt the Ozrics lost the plot once they brought in Brandi and became a family band (to be honest I really enjoyed Paper Monkeys). Let's hope Mantric Muse continues to release more albums, but it's really hard telling, ěresund Space Collective could easy take much of their time, given the buzz they have in space rock circles. ěSC has released so much material to the point that only Acid Mother's Temple and Radio Massacre International would rival them in prolific output. Unlike Tidal Flood, who never made it past EP stage, I'm glad Mantric Muse finally gave a full LP, some 15 years after their debut EP. This is an album that all space rock fans, particularly of the Ozric variety, should own.

Latest members reviews

5 stars I have waited for over 10 years for this. I've been a huge fan of instrumental space rock for as far as I can remember. Everything that is similar to the Ozric Tentacles or has anything to do with The Ozrics. I stumbled upon Mantric Muse via Oresund Space Collective. The members of OSC were m ... (read more)

Report this review (#894215) | Posted by Kingsnake | Tuesday, January 15, 2013 | Review Permanlink

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