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Ozric Tentacles - Spirals In Hyperspace CD (album) cover

SPIRALS IN HYPERSPACE

Ozric Tentacles

 

Psychedelic/Space Rock

3.76 | 169 ratings

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Sagichim
Special Collaborator
Honorary Collaborator
4 stars Being a big Ozric fan I have tried to get into this album for years, every few months I tried again and again but couldn't get through 3 or 4 tracks, what bothered me about it is mainly the sound, the music was dominated by the heavy keyboard sound while guitars were pushed aside, cuasing the album to sound unnatural. There are only 3 tracks here to feature real drums, something that made it even harder for me to digest. But once I got used to the sound I started paying more attention to the material and how the music was crafted and it clicked, it clicked big time. Suddenly I started thinking "Hey this is a great sounding album!" and couldn't stop listening to it because it had so much to offer. In spite of what I thought at the beginning guitars aren't that pushed aside, yes they are less evident than before but they are present for a good extent, it's a good thing the keys here are of high quality. That is why I believe it is such a controversial album among fans. The reason for this album being what it is is the fact that it's mostly a solo album by band leader Ed Wynne, the rest of the band contribute very little to this recording, particularly on Oakum featuring Zia Geelani on bass and the great Steve Hillage on the superb Akasha.

The album starts with Chewier, that in spite of being heavy on the keys it's an excellent energetic rocker, top that with a furious guitar solo ala Steve Vai from Ed, a great opener indeed. Spirals In Hyperspace is one of the best (and longest) pieces here proving what a genius Mr. Wynne is, there's some beautiful keys work here accompanied by fantastic guitar solos, I love how the atmosphere here is relaxed although this is quite an upbeat track. It turns middle eastern about half way ending with some crushing guitar work outs, great stuff! Slinky is another long piece led mostly by the keyboard, although I usually need more than just that ,it feels complete and enjoyable with its tranquil and spacey atmosphere, 2.5 minutes before the end guitar is added with another beautiful solo. Toka Tola is a favorite of mine, it is more upbeat, I just love that infectious theme and the interplay between guitar and keys all along. Plasmoid is my least favorite here, again it is mostly led by keys, not bad at all but I'm not a fan of this kind of harsh and edgy sound, coming from the Ozrics make it moderately enjoyable for me. Oakum is the most famous piece here being sometimes performed live, played here with real drums making this piece sound the most natural and organic. Nothing original really just another space rocker that the Ozrics are so good at delivering. Good synth and keys work plus great guitars from Ed and as I mentioned before Zia Geelani's excellent bass work. Akasha featuring Steve Hillage is definitely one of the highest points on the album, probably the best track here. A very unique piece with a cool rhythm, amazing synth work and of course brilliant interplay between guitars, it turnes more energetic half way through and it works perfectly. Psychic Chasm is another unique sounding piece making this album a bit more diverse, the first part is led by a tribal drumming on tablas and floaty sounds, this is wonderful. It gets more upbeat later with great synth work guitar is added to spice things up it sounds like a real party now, later on the beat gets more deep sounding, this could work on a rave trance party I kid you not, very very nice! Zoemetra is another organic middle eastern sounding track, although pretty upbeat it's not heavy but quite laid back and calm, great ending to this album.

I think this is another well written, tightly crafted and overall successful attempt by Ed Wynne, once you get passed the heavy keyboard sound of the album and start paying attention to the details this is a very rewarding album. 4 stars.

Sagichim | 4/5 |

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