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SPIRITS BURNING

Psychedelic/Space Rock • Multi-National


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Spirits Burning biography
California-based SPIRITS BURNING is a worldwide space rock collective headed by U.S. composer/producer Don Falcone (keyboards, bass, vocals). Originally established as a San Francisco band in 1986, Spirits Burning arose from a group called 'Kameleon'. In 1994, Falcone left Melting Euphoria to concentrate on other projects, one of which was resurrecting SPIRITS BURNING. Over the ensuing years, Falcone and the new SPIRITS BURNING began to collaborate with a myriad of talented musicians, most notably Gong's Daevid Allen and several members of Hawkwind.

SPIRITS BURNING is a musical collective that has released several albums offering a combination of space rock, ambient and jazz with input from many of the genre's luminaries. They first signed with French label Musea Records in 1998 and the debut 'New Worlds By Design' came out on Musea affiliate Gazul Records.

Just as the internet began to evolve Falcone became a pioneer in recruiting musicians on an ad hoc basis across the ether, those who would have few hope of playing face-to-face otherwise. Some wellknown contributors were Porcupine Tree's Steven Wilson and High Tide's Simon House.

In 2009 Voiceprint Records released the 10-year retrospective 'Our Best Trips - 1998-2008', culled from the first five SPIRITS BURNING CDs which alone feature more than 60 musicians. New releases 'Bloodlines' and 'Earth Born' consequently followed, deriving from a liaison with Bridget Wishart. 2010 saw a new band album called 'Crazy Fluid'

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StarhawkStarhawk
Import
United States Dist 2015
Audio CD$9.28
$14.00 (used)
Our Best Trips: 1998 to 2008Our Best Trips: 1998 to 2008
Import
100% WOMON 2009
Audio CD$8.17
$10.45 (used)
New Worlds By DesignNew Worlds By Design
Import
Musea Records France 2001
Audio CD$193.27
$161.01 (used)
Crazy FluidCrazy Fluid
Import
Voiceprint UK 2010
Audio CD$6.45
$6.44 (used)
Behold the Action Man / Make Believe It RealBehold the Action Man / Make Believe It Real
Import
Imports 2014
Audio CD$10.33
$69.99 (used)
Right Now on Ebay (logo)
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SPIRITS BURNING discography


Ordered by release date | Showing ratings (top albums) | Help Progarchives.com to complete the discography and add albums

SPIRITS BURNING top albums (CD, LP, MC, SACD, DVD-A, Digital Media Download)

0.00 | 0 ratings
New Worlds By Design
1999
0.00 | 0 ratings
Reflections In A Radio Shower
2002
3.00 | 1 ratings
Found In Nature
2006
0.00 | 0 ratings
Alien Injection
2007
0.00 | 0 ratings
Earth Born
2008
0.00 | 0 ratings
Golden Age Orchestra
2009
0.00 | 0 ratings
Bloodlines
2009
0.00 | 0 ratings
Crazy Fluid
2010
3.00 | 2 ratings
Behold The Action Man
2011
3.95 | 2 ratings
Healthy Music In Large Doses (with Clearlight)
2013
3.00 | 3 ratings
Make Believe It Real
2014
3.95 | 2 ratings
Starhawk
2015
0.00 | 0 ratings
The Roadmap In Your Head
2016

SPIRITS BURNING Live Albums (CD, LP, MC, SACD, DVD-A, Digital Media Download)

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SPIRITS BURNING Boxset & Compilations (CD, LP, MC, SACD, DVD-A, Digital Media Download)

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Our Best Trips: 1998-2008
2009

SPIRITS BURNING Official Singles, EPs, Fan Club & Promo (CD, EP/LP, MC, Digital Media Download)

SPIRITS BURNING Reviews


Showing last 10 reviews only
 Starhawk by SPIRITS BURNING album cover Studio Album, 2015
3.95 | 2 ratings

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Starhawk
Spirits Burning Psychedelic/Space Rock

Review by Rivertree
Special Collaborator PSIKE Team & Band Submissions

4 stars SPIRITS BURNING is a sheer studio project, headed by California based composer and producer Don Falcone. Just knowing with safety - quite apart from the fact that Daevid Allen unfortunately is not with us anymore - they never ever will be caught in the act while stepping on the stage altogether, even not halfway. Don instead organizes the process to bring contributions from more than 40 musicians into accord by using some modern technique, and he's very experienced at that, just for the record.

'Starhawk' comes as a typical concept album, thus in some sense comparable to their 2011 album 'Behold The Action Man'. It's a musical adaption, following the steps of Mack Maloney's eponymous sci-fi series. Hereby the booklet offers an 8-page comic, which will give you a clue about the story running behind. And this first of all is featuring space traveller Hawk Hunter as the central figure. Accordingly, as might be expected, lyric-wise there's much to tell, this presented by a well sorted crew of vocalists who are embracing a proper range of expression.

By way of example just let me mention Judge Smith's more theatrical operetta style on Stellar Kingdom, which may not attract while staying on its own, but when considering the context, very well though. Or later you'll be introduced to some celestial respectively ethereal contributions presented by Emma McKenzie and Bridget Wishart, just when Hawk Hunter's new flame Princess Xara comes into play. Well, as for a first summary this means that the vocal parts are supplied as a really well thought out aspect here.

Musically the album covers a lot of influences and is characterized by a rather cinematic flow, which nonetheless, like Right On The Mark, includes enough rock songs as such. Hence you won't miss Hawkwind references either way - no wonder when having a look at the complete line up. Now coming to 'Hawk and Hunter' - I'm really flabbergasted by the song I Have Two Names. Kev Ellis is singing, the booklet tells. Albeit, also taking the composition as such into account, at first I meant to hear a David Bowie issue. Surely successful, on top of it Billy Sherwood contributes a nice space guitar solo.

And then Let's All Go Cloud Puffing is serving a strong indo/raga feel, My Life Of Voices on the other hand will include crimsonesque moments. There are attractive melodic compositions of lasting memory given, like the couple We Move You and Tripping With The Royal Family featuring Paul Sears behind the drum kit. Furthermore a lot of soaring guitars as well as spheric synths are provided, the latter in the same way as the organ and strings by Don himself basically.

Not solely regarding the story behind, 'Starhawk' is more of a mellow space rock album overall. This quasi like recollecting the SPIRITS BURNING origin, since some former albums stylistically quite a lot are wandering through other territories. The more I listen the more I can smell the rounded concept and implementation. Finally, 'So strong is desire - so strong is my fire' ... the band are finishing this episode with a melancholic song of love, interpreted by Karen Anderson on this occasion. Yes, they are catering for many tastes here - a nice album that is well worth a closer listen.

 Make Believe It Real by SPIRITS BURNING album cover Studio Album, 2014
3.00 | 3 ratings

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Make Believe It Real
Spirits Burning Psychedelic/Space Rock

Review by Rivertree
Special Collaborator PSIKE Team & Band Submissions

3 stars 'Make Believe It Real' is another SPIRITS BURNING co-production where Bridget Wishart plays an important role according to lyrics and music - a singer/songwriter artist working in partnership with Don Falcone since 2003. Yet again just about a million freelance collaborators or so are involved in the recordings. Many familiar names are deriving from the widespread Hawkwind family hereby. To bring such an amount of musicians together for the recordings would mean to achieve the impossible, hence cultivating this sort of approach in developing music - which is Don's job most likely - requires another strategy of course.

CD1 features eleven new compositions, where the second disc comprises remixes and songs that were previously available on compilations only. Generally speaken this is more dedicated to spend a relaxed one and a half hour. Apart from the synths maybe, a space rock component decreases here to the benefit of ambient, folk, jazz and lounge associated moments. Accordingly Bridget is not acting like a standard rock singer, her voice is rather charming, more ethereal, restrained, not pushing at all. Also, well-known for being in control of a EWI synthesizer she's contributing a lot here while generating diverse wind instruments. On top of it the cover artwork is developed by her too.

Technically seen this is flawless, as everything what is worked out by Don's hands music-wise, no doubt. A lot of details are to recognize again. And the album is far from being overproduced, regarding such a bunch of different contributors. However the compostions can't seduce me all the way through. The extended fok/chamber drenched Reflections suite for example can't touch my soul, probably designated as the album's centerpiece and certainly produced with heart and mind. A matter of taste of course. On the other hand, featuring Alan Davey's (bass) and Jay Tausig's (guitar) ambitious share, I like the powerful Eternal Energy that much.

Luckily the bonus tracks on CD2 are considerably improving the whole production, starting with the space rock genre typical Always. Or just following the wonderful triphop flavoured Iceflow which comes Lunar Dunes reminiscent. And finally Chain Of Thought evolves to another captivating exemplar. This album may find some fans, especially those who are oriented at Bridget's appeal of course. Anway, I would prefer other SPIRITS BURNING productions though. Apart from that - and this will round up my rating in the end.- for me it's still awe-inspiring to observe how this collective is realizing the process of developing music.

 Healthy Music In Large Doses    (with Clearlight) by SPIRITS BURNING album cover Studio Album, 2013
3.95 | 2 ratings

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Healthy Music In Large Doses (with Clearlight)
Spirits Burning Psychedelic/Space Rock

Review by Rivertree
Special Collaborator PSIKE Team & Band Submissions

4 stars All right, I would say that SPIRITS BURNING are stretching the genre boundaries again with this album. But hey, it's okay - on one hand here we have a distinctive orientation towards jazz, symphonic and avant to state - however, overall synths and guitars are still representing a strong spacey vibe. And so, regarding such a stylistical mix, this album comes as another really unusual attempt. I could only name Bo Hansson, who - but only concerning some parts, to make it clear - had to offer roughly the same in style and mood. CLEARLIGHT head Cyrille Verdeaux from France is deeply involved in the production, makes a lasting expression due to his piano and organ input above all.

Again a bunch of musicians have made a contribution to the thirteen songs. Solely mastermind Don Falcone appears on every track, understandingly enough, as he has assembled the puzzle in the end. This time Daevid Allen plays a relatively minor role, being present on one song named Bring It Down - lyrics and vocals are offered by himself, related to environment protection in general. 'If the hurricane don't shake ya, maybe the song can wake ya' - lyrically seen a clear message, musically this makes it to a proper reggae tune anyhow.

SPIRITS BURNING are on a relaxed trip predominantly - the rock component takes a backseat in general. Hence the first two songs appear in a rather jazzy lounge outfit, where Raised On Coal & Oil is more suitable for background listening. Treasures At The Dawn Of The Century strongly features electronic elements, although eqipped with a sawing electric guitar too. The atmospheric ethno and chamber/symphonic flavoured Our Secret Cloud is the first to offer a vocal presence then, a gripping implementation due to some different stages - excellent - the album's peak I would say ...

... if not Infinite City works inspired in a quite similiar way, shows - partially distorted - lyrics in French by Verdeaux, just another tricky exemplar which obviously appears jazz/fusion laden. Hand Signals & Daily Horoscopes is the very best to remind me of the aforementioned Bo Hansson, where The Road To Shave Ice otherwise mirrors something like an avant space attitude. A variety of events is summed up, no wonder, considering that members of Thinking Plague, The Muffins, Universal Totem Orchestra are also taking part here.

'Healthy Music In Large Dosis' - an aural panacea in other words - this means yet another song collection where the listener has the opportunity to explore a lot which evolves off the beaten path. Released on Gonzo Multimedia this is an album with an unpredictable flow and quite a few compositions of high quality. Wind instruments are very present, just to note another prominent trademark. I hear a challenging blend of different music styles and instruments, suitable for moments of reflection basically ... and equipped with a lasting impression, if you decide to stay tuned to it for a while.

 Behold The Action Man by SPIRITS BURNING album cover Studio Album, 2011
3.00 | 2 ratings

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Behold The Action Man
Spirits Burning Psychedelic/Space Rock

Review by Rivertree
Special Collaborator PSIKE Team & Band Submissions

3 stars During the recent decade and a half California based Don Falcone is acting like a jack of all trades apparently, when it comes to making music - or even better to say organizing music in some way. I mean, just have a look at the particular line-up listed for those numerous albums he already has produced under the moniker SPIRITS BURNING - then you will know what I mean. Really awe-inspiring, isn't it? And I don't have any clue how he is able to manage this concretely - apart from having a busy email account ... and a Red Telephone maybe.

Okay, it's quite obvious that this collection - consisting of 16 songs in total - is not, at least not solely, resulting from common recording sessions somewhere in a studio. That means, also tapes and a bunch of digital snippets must have gone back and forth, predominantly between the US and UK I assume, until the final mix was ready to go at some point. So concerning this procedure explicitly - at least at the very start - he quite rightly can be deemed as a pioneer. Well, this is my first SPIRITS BURNING attempt, which is announced as a 'Space Rock Journey Into Film Noir'. Stand and deliver! So what is it now? The art work is certainly corresponding, while being faced with the Action Man aka Roger Neville-Neil on the front, a cool figure in trench coat and fedora.

Cast shadows behind a curtain and diverse other hints are pointing to a dangerous and somewhat criminal affair which is going on here (though given with sense of humour, taken for granted, just in order to defuse the situation a little). Hawkwind companion Neville-Neil is responsible for the story and appears as the co-producer here. Furthermore, most of the songs are worked out in collaboration with Daevid Allen, who frequently is guesting at Don's homebase. This surprisingly sounds really organic, when considering the modus operandi. The song collection represents a wonderous mixed bag of ideas and impressions in general, summarized by a cinematic note overall.

Fine - SPIRITS BURNING have a really promising start with Rendezvous At Lava Lounge - this is an excellent prog drenched space rock tune, featuring flute, the beloved Mellotron and Gitta MacKay on vocals reprising the album motto like a mantra. The following Stand And Deliver shows a styling which already is closer to Hawkwind, I'm speaking of the vocal attitude as well as the straightforward garage rock beat. Though presented with a way of expression, which comes a bit lighter in general. Thematically this is dealing with some figures of serious crime, for example bank robber John Dillinger, hijacker D.B. Cooper or pirate Bold Black Bart.

Not every song makes it to a blockbuster, the more garage rocking impressions sometimes sound repetitive for example. In order to mention other outstanding pieces, let me continue with Outcast which shows some ethno/krautrock leanings due to didgeridoo and the hypnotic flow. The dark melancholic HypnoSpy comes David Sylvian inspired where the grooving instrumental Hemlock On The Rocks expresses a happy optimistic flavour. 'You are nothing more than a hired voyeur' ... Obelisk Of Fondue represents a rather weird snippet with Daevid Allen on vocals.

You see, there's a lot to explore on this occasion - hereby 'Behold The Action Man', released on Gonzo Multimedia, features some familiar hints from Gong, Hawkwind, Here & Now, Secret Saucer aso. Spacey synths everywhere you are, variating vocals also including Bridget Wishart and Don himself, violin arrangements coming from Cyndee Lee Rule ... eh, although deserved, I don't know if it is helpful to name all the contributors here. In any case there's a lot of competence brought together by Don Falcone, and the result is a rather interesting album overall.

Thanks to rivertree for the artist addition.

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