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The Band Whose Name Is A Symbol - Elevator CD (album) cover


The Band Whose Name Is A Symbol


Psychedelic/Space Rock

2.86 | 3 ratings

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siLLy puPPy
3 stars Smoke breathing apes always get my attention on album covers especially when it looks similar to the series of solo Kiss albums from the 70s with that jet black background and the stylized SYMBOL in the upper lefthand corner which i presume represents the identifying factor of THE BAND WHOSE NAME IS A SYMBOL (aka TBWNIS). This group comes from the capital city of Ottawa, Ontario, Canada, North America, Earth, Solar System, Milky Way etc and is an example of one of the many newer psychedelic rock jam bands that is the closest thing i've heard to modern Hawkwind inspirations. While the band formed in 2008, fast forward to 2017 and they release not one but two albums! The first of these releasees is their 9th studio album ELEVATOR which exudes a 70s zeitgeist but employs all the modern technology to make it a crystal clear listening experience.

No credits seem to be given for instruments as the musicians are simply listed as "performers," but ELEVATOR contains the usual rock instrumentation with guitar, bass and drums with some ambient touches including a space horn on "Bridge Of Regret" the megalengthened 16 minute track on the album. For the most part ELEVATOR is a predictable psychedelic rock jam session with grooves emerging slowly at the beginning and picking up steam and repeating in a predictable looping manner. The style is much like early 70s Hawkwind before they got terribly complex in their ambitions. The music reminds me of them in particular because it is fairly heavy with strong distorted fuzz guitars, groovy bass hooks and hyperactive drumming action. Guitar solos sizzle on in tripped out manners once the music reaching the boiling point and all is entirely instrumental without a vocalist to be heard.

Well, Hawkwind may be the first thing to come to mind but this ain't Hawkwind. This is a fairly simple formula for getting lost in for sure and is a pleasant listening experience but there certainly isn't very much that stands out as dynamic, original or exciting. This is simple jamming sessions that extend out with subtle variations and not much more. While the production, tones, fuzz and passion are clearly there, i can't say this album blows me away and like the smoke coming out of the chimp's mouth, no fire either. After a near solid decade of pumping out albums, i would expect more from this band but i'm just finding them average and it doesn't beckon me to explore their discography any further. Having stated that, the track "Bridge Of Regret" is an awesome track with spaced out atmospheric intro that extends to the heavens into trippers paradise. This one reminds me of the long winding buildups of Acid Mothers Temple. The horn is a nice touch as it distinguishes the track from the rest. Good album but not much more. Cool album cover, smoking simians rule :)

siLLy puPPy | 3/5 |


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