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35007 - Liquid CD (album) cover

LIQUID

35007

Psychedelic/Space Rock


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avestin
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR
Honorary Collaborator
4 stars A voyage in space.

The cover art depicts quite well the spirit of the music and the content of this album. Floating in space - the more calm parts; getting caught in a force field or "solar storm" - portrayed by the powerful and heavy riffs.

Tsunami starts with ethereal sounds, emanating separately and then merging into each other slowly, within a spacey atmosphere that justifies their space rock tag. You feel as if you are drifting somewhere obscure surrounded by blackness, without any possibility to look beyond and then when the guitars emerge you gain sight ability and can "see" the sounds. And when the guitars unleash, you feel the heavy and slow Tsunami riffing, hitting your shores with the power spilling and splashing all over with the drums giving the energy to keep going. The sound here borrows from what is often referred to as post-metal as well as from spacey sounding rock and also some post-rock characteristics. Towards the end (around 8:50) it seems to fade out, but then it EXPLODES again, full blown raw energy of electric guitars until the end. This experience must be heard in the dark and alone for the full effect to take place.

Crystalline starts from the remnants of the Tsunami with the same tempo but a somewhat lighter spirit due to the guitar semi-acoustic sound which now flows in the front and the rear of the speaker as if strolling around the music, making sure it stays in frame. A hard task, as the heavy riffs and powerful drums seem too hard to contain and keep calm. But then they seem to unite their efforts and go together with a more dynamic going part and the full electric guitars take over. Here again we get the same "trick" of a seemingly ending track, and the blasting as was in Tsunami.

Evaporate seems to continue Crystalline but adds noticeable keyboards and bass work. There is an interplay between the bass-keyboards dominated part and that of the heavy guitar riffs part. Here the repetitiveness is more obvious as the cycle mentioned repeats itself several times, but is not tiresome and always keeps the dynamics moving.

Voyage Automatique goes on in a more psychedelic state of mind (with guitars making noises) and bears some of the sounds of previous tracks and by that keeps the flow. At the end we go back to the sounds that started the album, thereby closing full circle. If you get Phase V, you will notice it will start with the same noises this album ends with.

The journey 35007 guide us through is one great experience that can be heard as a background music, but then you would miss the whole point. In order to extract the full potential of this record, one must be fully devoted to it, and follow the streams, the highs and lows through which the music takes us. You will then feel and "see" what it is that is mesmerizing in this album. This album sounds like one long piece with 4 smaller parts, which is due to the great sense of flow that is achieved by similar sounds, tempos and atmospheres that are to be found on the different tracks.

One criticism is that I find that it could have used perhaps more instrumentation (maybe saxes or trumpets) and a but more diversity, but overall this is one ride I keep coming back to and don't forget.

This album should appeal to fans of spacey rock, post metal (Pelican for instance) and post rock.

Now comes the part I dislike - the star rating. This is too arbitrary and soulless but for the sake of PA ranking it has to be done. In terms of stars, I would give it a near 4 stars (3.6-3.8). A 3 star rating seems too low and inappropriate to this, and so I think a 4 star would be a suitable rating as it reflects my enthusiasm with this album, and the great satisfaction and sense of relief I draw from listening to it. Not a statement I can say about any album. So I can see this being an essential album in this aspect.

To give you another idea of how this sounds, I would like to quote a sentence about their later album Phase V from the bands Myspace website.

"With the digit 5 hovering predominantly, the album is about numbers and sounds. No words, no images. The new album has already been nicknamed "songs for the blind", appropriately "visualized" by the minimal and sensuous artwork. Without the benefit of vision, the ears seem to work much better."

Immerse yourself.

For PA rating purposes: 3.75-4 stars

Report this review (#111137)
Posted Thursday, February 8, 2007 | Review Permalink
Chris H
PROG REVIEWER
4 stars What a trip!

35007's second (and arguably best) studio album, 2002's "Liquid", is an adventure that I have fondly nicknamed "the blind man's guide to space travel". It sounds rather silly, but once you hear this album you will know what I'm talking about. The layering of atmospheric textures and psychedelic fills just strikes me as mind-blowing.

"Tsunami" is the first journey on the album. All of the fading and exploding of the music reminds me of a vast wasteland with catastrophic explosions occurring every minute. Maybe in space? Well I'm not sure what the messages are here, but just the opening song in itself is good enough to warrant this as a masterpiece of space-rock. "Tsunami" can be whatever you interpret to be. If you want it to be relaxing and ambient, there are many parts for you to enjoy. If you want heavy, pounding drums and ear- shattering bass, there are also many high points.

"Crystalline" can be describes almost as the son of "Tsunami". Raised from its ashes, "Crystalline" continues the tempo while those pounding drums and ground- shaking riffs break out of their cages and just let everything loose on this track. The band does seem more united on this track, however it is a tad less adventurous as its predecessor .

Keeping with the theme of trying to make the album flow like a single track, "Evaporate" is formed from the explosive remnants of "Crystalline". Instead of the massive percussion attack like we saw on the first two tracks, this song takes a keyboard route, with keyboards dominating most of the first 75% of the song. Towards the end, a little bit of repetitiveness is evident, but it doesn't hamper the overall quality too much.

"Voyage Automatique" is the end of the journey, and the end of our circle around space. I call it a circle because if you listen close enough, you can hear the final sounds of "Voyage Automatique" carrying into the very sounds that opened the album on "Tsunami". Crazy, eh?

So if you have ever wanted to travel into deep space, but either couldn't afford the rocket or have intense motion sickness, that is definitely the album for you! I must warn some folks however, I would not recommend this album if you don't enjoy transitions from quiet to heavy pieces or If you want some more up-tempo radio-friendly music.

I took off one star because of the combination of repetitiveness at the end of "Evaporate" and the lack of power in the middle section of "Voyage Automatique". Other than those minor detail flaws, this is an album every space-rock junkies should make an effort to own.

4 stars for NASA's new soundtrack!

Report this review (#125255)
Posted Saturday, June 9, 2007 | Review Permalink
Mellotron Storm
PROG REVIEWER
4 stars Once again I have to thank Avestin for bringing another great band to my attention. The title of the record is "Liquid" and on the front cover is a person diving into the water,and when you open it up you will see this amazing picture of these towering waves on both sides and you feel like your in this swell at the mercy of the ocean. I am reminded of the title of THE SPACIOUS MIND album called "Sailing Of The Seagoat". This for me is a ride on the sea that sometimes is at night where it's dark and calm when suddenly the waves start to build and your hanging on tight.Then a crushing wave will send you on an exhilarating ride. Next it's sunny and everything is perfect you would rather be nowhere else until the seas start to get rough and it continues to get worse as the clouds have covered the sun and your hanging on for dear life again.Yeah this is a trip.

It opens with "Tsunami" and as you might imagine from the title this one has some crushing soundscapes. It starts with spacey synths that are joined by gentle guitar melodies 2 1/2 minutes in. It's all starting to build as drums are added. We get a full sound 5 minutes in with BLACK SABBATH-like heaviness, almost doom-like. It all calms back down before things start to get heavy again 9 minutes in as crushing waves crash upon us.

"Crystalline" has a pastoral intro as the sound starts to build. The melody 3 minutes in sounds so good ! This is perfect weather folks and you wish it would just go on like this forever. But 7 minutes in we are flattened by a wall of sound as the song ends. "Evaporate" has a good contrast between the heavy outbreaks and the beautiful soundscapes throughout this song. It has a spacey ending. "Voyage Automatique" has a good beat and a really nice sound with spacey synths, and it's heavy. The beat then stops as spacey synths continue until the song is over. This is the exact same melody that opened the album.

I highly recommend this album to all you space cadets out there.This sounds so good loud.

Report this review (#135282)
Posted Tuesday, August 28, 2007 | Review Permalink
5 stars The best thing i heard in the last months.

Made by a peculiar heavy progressive band, this album is very hypnotic, with great drums and all instrumental, without the energic vocals of the first 2 albums of the band, and much more spacey and atmospheric than his predecessors. A strong guitar in style of stoner rock bands and synths effects that create furious crescendos, particulary in Voyage Automatique, my favourite track. Other highlights are Tsunami and Crystalline, i give five stars for them too. Four stars for Evaporate and then you have a masterpiece of progressive music for my taste. I recommend this effort, for sure!

Report this review (#224860)
Posted Tuesday, July 7, 2009 | Review Permalink
octopus-4
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR
RIO/Avant/Zeuhl,Neo & Post/Math Teams
4 stars It was since Barret's Interstellar Overdrive that I didn't here anything like this. I remember that I was used to describe early PF music as "liquid". Lie in the dark, take your headphones and you will have a tsunami in your ears. The first track starts quiet, as the calm before the storm. It's pure space/psychedelic. It's not Barret because the sounds are newer, and not so acid. When you'll reach the first explosion, you'll understand the reason of the title. You can see in your mind what the music tries to transmit. It's a sonic trip. The following tracks don't have the same impact, but there is a continuity that makes it similar to a concept album, even if instrumental only. Liquid is an excellent title for the kind of music that it contains. Unlike some post-60 psychedelic albums like those of Bevis Frond or the most recent Jennifer Gentle, what matters is not how acid are the sounds that they can obtain, but the fluidity that they reach. One time I have forgot the "loop" function of my stereo on, and I've listened to the whole album 2 times realizing it only when the first explosion of tsunami arrived for the second time. I left it on, however.

4 stars.

Report this review (#236754)
Posted Thursday, September 3, 2009 | Review Permalink
5 stars This is just overwhelming. It seems to be a concept album about water and its different manifestations. Whatever it was meant to be, musically the thread is never lost. It is more like a single 40 min song with recurring themes all through. Heavy, psychedelic, dreamy. It is perfectly composed, creating tensions and surprises. It catches you in the beginning and doesn't let you go until th end. First you've got the quiet before the storm with twinkling, rippling sounds. Perfectly to lean back and kick of your shoes. But after about 5 minutes the song is living up its name. A monstrous tsunami wave hits your speakers: A heavy, nearly doom-like riff (due to its slow tempo). Like the ocean itself it is rising and ebbing away, hitting again when no one would expect it. Seamless it fades into the next track. A groovy bass and drum section accompanies again twinkling and dreamy but also disturbing sounds made by guitar and synth. The song constantly evolves without changing the theme. Now "Evaporate" starts right off with a kickass drum and bass line and heavy riffs. Again, the dynamics are perfectly balanced. "Voyage automatique" continues the overall concept of the Album. Dreamy, floating but still very impulsive. When the last sounds vanish, you get the feeling of waking up from the big sleep. Little sizzling noises and reality turns back in. 555555 Stars
Report this review (#249469)
Posted Tuesday, November 10, 2009 | Review Permalink
4 stars I am a sucker for a good album cover. There was something very "classic science fiction" about the look, so I decided to listen to the sample track. I was very pleasantly surprised. In less than an hour I bought the whole album off iTunes. I've given it three or four complete run throughs since then (like 12am last night). This is a great album.

Not world shattering or incalculably mind blowing. The ideas here aren't the freshest, but they are well presented and engrossing. Liquid is an entirely instrumental album and judging by the song titles it is a concept album inspired by water. Instrumentals and Psychedelic tends to be the mood I'm in lately. I've picked up Vangelis' Heaven and Hell and Tangerine Dream's Rubycon and been revisiting my Ozric Tentacles. The thing I really like about Liquid, especially when put against Heaven and Hell and the Ozrics, is that it is very consistent all the way through. They even come full circle, the sounds that lead off the album show up again at the end. Not only consistent mind you, but consistently good.

On Tsunami (Water) I can really get the post rock influence on the bad. Walls of sound abound. This song has an interesting concept and when you listen to it, you'll know it's aptly named. Up next is Crystalline (Ice). Tsunami just slides right into it without so much as a hiccup. From there Crystalline is pounding heavily distorted drone, I guess that would likely qualify it as stoner rock. Now comes Evaporation (Steam). My personal favourite off the album and the reason I ran out and bought it ASAP. Sonically, Evaporation falls in with the loud drone of Crystalline, but tends to rock a little harder. It has an excellent riff. Finally we arrive at the Voyage Atomique (Plasma). In general it is less intense than the last two. It does do a lot of exploring over its 13 and a half minute course though. It actually reminds me somewhat of the rolling bass beat that drives up the middle of Rubycon. It stays mostly low key. Then again this album doesn't really reach for the stars with crawling solos. Good whole band effort.

Nothing about this album leaps off the page as an unstoppable masterpiece, but you know what? You can do a lot worse than picking up Liquid. I would qualify it most certainly as an excellent addition to any prog rock music collection. If you are interest go to the 35007 page and give Evaporation a listen and it will give you a real good idea of what this album is all about.

Liquid bats four for five.

Report this review (#254813)
Posted Monday, December 7, 2009 | Review Permalink
LearsFool
COLLABORATOR
Post/Math Rock Team
5 stars To borrow the review style used for quick run downs of albums on best of lists: What makes "Liquid" one of the greatest albums ever to grace these archives? Maybe it's the killer confluence of ambient, space rock, stoner rock, and even a bit of stoner metal the band achieves here. Perhaps it's more succinctly the Thorian guitar work of both Fridael and Sponselee in a bass free environment, only supported by the Liebezeit channeling drumming of Sander Evers. Those riffs on "Crystalline" that sound like Kyuss's best brought to new life in a distant galaxy? Could it be that it is because this is all a concept album about water, so deliciously wrought for a theme that for all we know was conjured up when one of the band members spilled a bong, perhaps onto the gatefold of "In Through The Out Door"? Or maybe because, quite simply, it's tracks are loooong, and fit that element perfectly.

The correct answer is all of the above. Get yourself a copy of this and have yourself a kickin' trip into the beyond, brothers and sisters.

Report this review (#1368826)
Posted Saturday, February 14, 2015 | Review Permalink

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