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Gong Acid Motherhood album cover
3.88 | 109 ratings | 5 reviews | 18% 5 stars

Excellent addition to any
prog rock music collection

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Studio Album, released in 2004

Songs / Tracks Listing

1. Ocean of Molasses (1:32)
2. Supercotton (8:36)
3. Olde Fooles Game (2:08)
4. Zeroina (2:57)
5. Brainwash Me (3:59)
6. Monstah! (2:32)
7. Bible Study (0:30)
8. Bazuki Logix (4:15)
9. Waving (4:05)
10. Makototen (13:37)
11*. Schwitter's Health Spa (0:11)
12. Schwitless in Molasses (4:36)

Total Time: 48:58

* - hidden track

Line-up / Musicians

- Daevid Allen / guitars, vocals
- Josh Pollock / guitar
- Kawabata Makoto / guitar, bouzouki
- Cotton Casino / synthesizer, vocals
- Dharmawan Bradbridge / bass
- Orlando Allen / drums

- Gilli Smith / vocals (2)
- Greg Sheenan / Hang (3), percussion (6)
- Kurt Schwitters / vocals (12)

Releases information

Artwork: Toby Allen

CD Voiceprint - VP311CD (2004, UK)
CD Voiceprint - mre04 (2004, US) Slightly different cover art

Thanks to Fantômas for the addition
and to NotAProghead for the last updates
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GONG Acid Motherhood ratings distribution

(109 ratings)
Essential: a masterpiece of progressive rock music(18%)
Excellent addition to any prog rock music collection(38%)
Good, but non-essential (24%)
Collectors/fans only (12%)
Poor. Only for completionists (8%)

GONG Acid Motherhood reviews

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

Collaborators/Experts Reviews

Review by Warthur
5 stars Though the album cover bills this one to Gong, I'm with the people who refer to this particular lineup as "Acid Mothers Gong" - so-called because of the inclusion of Acid Mothers Temple members Kawabata Makoto on guitar and Cotton Casino on synths and vocals. Truly, it doesn't sound like anything else in the Gong catalogue - and giving how diverse that is, that's saying a lot. Acid Mothers Temple are, of course, hugely influenced by not just Gong, but just about every countercultural band from the 1970s, as it witnessed by the brief instrumental introduction "Ocean of Molasses", which sounds like a Black Sabbath track reinterpreted by a schizophrenic.

The first full track, "Supercotton", is a dazzling opener, combining the best of Gong's past with a host of AMT's own musical ideas. You have Gilli Smith's ethereal wailing in the background occasionally to remind you that this is a Gong album, whilst the music lurches violently between passages which hark back to Gong classics like "You" and the modern reimagined psychedelia of Acid Mothers Temple, whilst Daevid's characteristically eccentric vocals are enhanced by some exciting exchanges between him and Casino Cotton. The members of both groups are clearly energised by the collaboration; the Acid Mothers Temple boys must be thrilled to be working with one of their heroes, whilst Daevid's vocal delivery shows more enthusiasm and energy than some of his work in his 1970s heyday, so clearly having the young upstarts on hand prompted him and the other Gong stalwarts present to give this one their all. By the time the track climaxes in a wailing guitar solo and swirling synthesiser effects from Kawabata and Cotton, I defy anyone to say that this particular experiment wasn't worthwhile.

Subsequent tracks do not disappoint either; the steel drum-driven "Olde Foole's Game" providing a more laid back and contemplative counterpoint to the frantic "Supercotton", before the instrumental "Zeroina" picks up the pace again with harsher and more aggressive guitar work than has appeared on any Gong album to date. Other highlights include "Brainwash Me", in which the band delivers an acid-soaked backing to Allen's punk- fuelled diatribe against the soulless Hollywood machine. "Bazuki Logix" is, of course, built around Bazuki's enchanting work on the Bazuki, whilst the epic "Makototen" adds heavy guitar work and freaked-out synths to a structure much like the longer, trancier tracks on "You".

Daevid Allen has always had a knack for bringing new talent into the wider Gong family to keep his music fresh and up to date; in that sense, Acid Mothers Gong can be compared to projects like New York Gong (the backing band on which ended up becoming the excellent Material), or Planet Gong in which Allen and Smith were backed by the members of Here and Now. It's an album in which a new generation's energy replenishes, nourishes and renews the Gong sound, and adds something brand new to it in the bargain - in fact, I'd say it's even more successful than either New York Gong or Planet Gong's albums at reinventing the Gong idea. It's both essential to Gong fans - if you're missing this, you're seriously missing out - and something I'd heartily recommend to any fans of the more psychedelic end of prog, even if you don't necessarily get on with other Gong albums, because it's just different and novel enough to be of universal interest. The cover art might be off-putting to some, but this is one album you don't want to judge by its cover.

Review by siLLy puPPy
5 stars After Daevid Allen left GONG following the completion of the Radio Gnome Invisible Trilogy in the 70s, the torch was passed to Pierre Moerlen who did a stellar job of shifting the band into a jazz-fusion band but all that wacky psychedelic Canterbury whimsy that Allen brought to the table was completely absent. While Allen himself would release some solo albums as well as explore other GONG splinter groups such as New York Gong and Gongmaison, the original GONG disappeared completely when Moerlen added his name to the band after "Shamal" and the original monosyllabic moniker was pretty much shelved until 1992's "Shapeshifter."

Upon returning to the UK, Allen resurrected his 70s creation simply by changing Gongmaison to GONG. Poof! It was so and the new GONG crafted the first album in almost 20 years and released "Shapeshifter" which boldly tackled the insurmountable task of trying to construct the fourth edition of Radio Gnome Invisible but sort of missed the mark. With this reunion the band was clearly reaching towards the past rather than reinventing themselves for the everything alternative 90s. While the prog revival was underway, bands like Dream Theater and Anglagard were taking it to new realities. GONG was sounding a bit dated. The 90s found a few archival releases as well as the cash in attempt of a remix of "You" and then another retro release in the form of "Zero To Infinity" in 2000. It seemed that GONG was forever stuck in the past.

But wait! Daevid Allen was all about progressing and after a decade of reliving the glory years without the expected results, he reinvented the whole GONG experience once again with 2003's most bizarre edition to the GONG universe of all, the mondo bizarro ACID MOTHERHOOD. Perhaps this album takes the Canterbury whimsy to its logical conclusion with the album cover of a smiling Allen whose is head attached to a pregnant woman's body and to make it even more ridiculous, there are two of them slapping each other's asses! LOLOLOLOLOLOL!!!!! Yeah, it's a scary sight indeed but despite this rather unflattering display of psychedelic freakery run amok, ACID MOTHERHOOD was just what the doctor ordered to make GONG relevant in the 21st century.

ACID MOTHERHOOD was actually the bizarre fusion of three bands. Allen's classic 70s GONG, Japan's Acid Mothers Temple and Allen's American band University of Errors. From the GONG side of the equation it was only Allen himself and everyone's favorite space whisperer Gilli Smyth who were back in the driver's seat but more than cast their weight in this most psychedelic musical adventure. Kawabath Makoto (guitar, bouzouki) and Cotton Casino (synthesizer, vocals) were from Acid Mother's Temple and Josh Pollock (guitars, drums) and Allen's son Orlando Allen (drums) were from the University of Errors side of the table. The lineup was completed by bassist Dharmawan Bradbridge along with a few guest musicians including Greg Sheehan on hang and various percussive instruments as well as Kurt Schwitterse delivering some extra vocals.

While many supergroups fail to deliver the fusion goods of the respective bands from which they emerged, on ACID MOTHERHOOD all the musicians on board worked together so very well that the three bands merge into a whole for this magnificent 49 minute listening experience. Be warned though. If you take drugs and listen to this album while gazing at the album cover for too long. Your mind will explode! Given that there are three guitarists on board, ACID MOTHERHOOD is by far the noisiest and heaviest album within the entire extended GONG family's lofty canon. Allen was a master of attracting new to talent to his projects and this crazy romp through the psychedelic noise rock universe is perhaps one of my favorite GONG albums of all time!

"Oceans of Molasses" opens with a noisy mix of jangly glissando guitars that sound like John Cage during a bad trip as it sounds like a mix of psychedelic rock and doom metal. Scary stuff but the following "Supercotton" lightens things up with Allen's narration of silly stories along with Gilli Smyth's vocal antics. The music has a bouncy funky groove while the glissando guitars and psychedelic synth parts go gangbusters like fireworks. Allen raps the lyrics in almost a high school band marching band rhythmic drive while the track delve deeper into mind bending freakery but also includes some massive heavy guitar bombast that adds some serious punk and funk elements to the mix.

While "Supercotton" is clearly an Allen penned track, so too are "Olde Fooles Game," "Zeroina," "Brainwash Me" and "Waving" as they display all the zany whimsical wisdom along with Allen's vocal style and glissando guitar techniques taken to their logical conclusion. "Zeroina" in particular is a heavy punk infused beast with super crunchy guitars on steroids."Monstah!" follows suit with a punk infused brutal prog style penned by Pollack whereas "Bazuki Logix" and the lengthy 13 minute "Makototen" allow the Acid Mothers Temple elements to reign supreme that allow the hypnotic cyclical guitar and bouzouki riffs to lift off far from Earth's gravitational pull. The closing "Schwitless in Molasses" continues the doom laden antics of the first track and slow down to a snail's pace with heavy distorted echoey guitar chords, down-tuned bass runs and Kurt Schwitters playing the role of pixie with mischievous lyrics emerging from the fuzz.

Yeah, this is not your 70s GONG album by any stretch of the imagination. In fact there is really nothing else out there period that sounds like this one but this one works on so many levels. The tracks are all over the place which keeps the whole thing thoroughly entertaining and there's not one bad track on the entire album. The perfect mix of doomy despair mixed with the happy-go-lucky humor is a real treat. This is a woefully under-appreciated little slice of heaven in the greater GONG universe. Set your mind free and listen to this N-N-N-OOOOO-W-W-W !!!!

Latest members reviews

4 stars the Canterbury-Space fusion of GONG, the first album that i heard of GONG was "Radio Gnome Invisible Vol. 3 - You", that was like 3 years ago, when i was starting my journey with prog rock, i didn't knew that GONG was a Canterbury Scene band, because they sounds very Space Rock. then i heard some ... (read more)

Report this review (#992202) | Posted by Zeuhl Glikowski II | Friday, July 5, 2013 | Review Permanlink

4 stars This is a very good album and a very good effort by Daevid Allen to bring somithing new and interesting in the Gong familly of albums. This album is for people who really want adventurous and sometime strange music. The second song in the album Daevid Allen sing the phrase "Take me away fron t ... (read more)

Report this review (#81509) | Posted by Fido73 | Monday, June 19, 2006 | Review Permanlink

4 stars In my opinion, this is the most worthwhile and least derivative thing any Gong band has done since the classic years, it stands on it's own without having to rely upon it being a Gong disc, spacey at times, folkish others, heavy beat a little, overall a varied and unexpected late high water mark. ... (read more)

Report this review (#66850) | Posted by Gonghobbit | Thursday, January 26, 2006 | Review Permanlink

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