25 Feb 2011

Serpentina Satelite get 9/10 review on Doommania

Peruvian Space-Rock gurus Serpentina Satelite, are back with the follow-up to their much praised Nothing to Say album. If you have never heard the band, you will be in for a treat if you love vintage 70's Space Rock sounds colliding with modern Stoner, Space Metal sounds especially "TAB" era Monster Magnet material. These days with a new label, Rocket Recordings in tow, they sound even more alive and vibrant they ever before. The band is essentially a prog-based outfit as they are heavily influenced by the sounds of Amon Düül II,, but they have also a passion for the otherworldly vibe that a band like Hawkwind can give the listener especially with a set of really good headphones strapped to the head. They have an improvisational approach or at least it sounds that way as the music is free-flowing and doesn't sound forced. There is also a mystical force at play here with the music sounding psychedelic but with a other-worldly atmosphere that takes the songs beyond the usual boundaries of what we know as "Space Rock". Sepentina Satelite has five members but it is the guitar duo of Renato Gómez and Dolmo that seem to be steering the ship on most of these musical voyages. Their sound and style is a mish-mash of moody solos and effects that is constantly changing the guitar picture, at times the guitars don't even sound like guitars as they have a very diverse approach to playing.

Mecanica Celeste begins with the track, "Fobos" which is the most Hawkwindish track on the album with guitar work that is heavy on sustain and is a real jaw-dropping fret work-out. A lot of the focus is on the drum-work of Aldo Castillejos as he supplies drum-rolls, cymbal smashes and all this adds to the overtly cosmic vibe. Nearly all the songs on "Mecanica Celeste" follow a similar path, starting slowly and constantly climbing the atmospheric scale. "Fobos" is a great opening track but the album gets even more impressive from here on in. The following tune, "Sangre De Grado"is a Acid-Rock freak-out and quite frankly the drumming can only be described as "insane". This mind-bending hodge-podge of a tune melts right into the title track and this is where the album hits its highpoint and stays there right to the end of the album. The title track is like a "Ash Ra Tempel meets Hawkwind" frenzied piece of glorious psychedelia and it never loses its driving force throughout its 8 minutes. The rather long-titled "Imaginez Quel Bonheur Ce Sera De Voir Nos Chers Disparus Ressuscités!" is the shortest track on the album and serves as a creepy interlude to the album. Translated from its French to English and you get "Imagine What It Will Happy To See Our Dear Missing Risen!".

"Ai Apaec" in places sounds so much like Hawkwind you could swear Dave Brock himself is the one making the cosmic guitar noise. This and the closing track "Sendero" both have a darker, more doom-metal vibe about them while still retaining the spacey jam-rock band feeling. "Sendero" is a real stand-out track probably because it is the easiest track to remember the next day after spinning the album. The dark, militaristic drumming with the guitars following the oppressive vibe it creates is mesmerizing but they also have the compulsory acid-drenched freak-out bit in the middle section. The tune builds nicely to a massive crescendo at the end finishing up what is a highly orgasmic moment in the history of "Space-Rock". As a bonus there is a short untitled track a few seconds after the noise has settled down, it is nothing special but an interesting conclusion to "Mercania Celeste". This album is certainly heavier and darker than the previous "Nothing To Say" album, the second half of the album especially so. Psychedelic and Space-Rock fans will surely dig this album as will fans of the free-flowing jammy rock of the 70's prog-rock variety. The musicianship is top-notch and the production is about as close to flawless as you can get. The songs are expertly crafted while the general cosmic atmosphere is nothing short of electric. This should be your next purchase if you are a musical psychedelic cosmonaut, highly recommended.......................9/10

See review in full here