Thursday, 5 August 2010

Módulo De Luna

Look at that fucking artwork. Looks like Luigi Serafini knocked up a cartoon self-portrait during a relaxing shroom break while he was creating the Codex Seraphinianus. That fantastic and ridiculous artwork, coupled with the fact the band are called Moon Unit, and the album entitled New Sky Dragon, probably has led you to believe we are back in the land of the deeply psychedelic. And you'd be right on the money.

This is, hands down, the finest fucking freakout (well, pair of freakouts) committed to vinyl in quite some time, a proper fucking rocket-ride through the universe's burning brain. Moon Unit are a trio comprised of Andreas Jonsson on synth, Peter Kelly on drums, and Ruaraidh Sanachan* on guitar. No bass player**, and none is needed here. In fact, the extra low-end a bass would have provided could possibly have rendered the whole thing a little more earthbound, weighing down the sunbound spacepod of sound instead of allowing it to accelerate up through the atmosphere to it's natural home, the cosmos.

Sonically speaking, this record had me nailed almost straight away, what with it sitting in a Lagrangian point perfectly balanced between the propulsive end of Krautrock and the singing, stinging, spiralling high-end mind erasure of classic UK underground blug. Think Electronic Meditation era Tangerine Dream (when they was vicious***) duking it out with Sunroof!, or Vibracathedral Orchestra with Jaki Liebezeit on drums. Ash Ra Tempel with a raga-noise boner.

Two twenty minute tracks, Internal Future and No Money No Nothing, is what you get. Both ever-ascending whirlpools that start slow, guitar and synth stalking each other, circling and intertwining like dancing cobras as the drums lay down rolling, metronomic rhythms which push the lead instruments to twist ever higher, picking up speed like a rocket pushing itself slowly off the launch pad and just accelerating harder and harder, imperceptibly at first, seemingly crawling towards the sky on a flame of modal fuzz, faster, higher until it hits escape velocity and bursts through the Van Allen belt, careening toward the stars until finally the engine cuts out and we're in freefall, weightless, awestruck by the synth nebulae and guitar novae that fill the sky from here to there.

*AKA the loon behind the fantastic, but very different Nackt Insecten, who I recommend unreservedly to all devotees of cosmic mung.

**No fucking Doors jokes please, this is real psychedelia.

***Seriously, TD's first album is a masterpiece of freeform psychedelic fuckyou that has been rarely equalled since, particularly by themselves. If you haven't heard it, well, y're in for a shock, no wibble, no sequencers, no synth at all, just awe-inspiring fuzztone murder (Edgar Froese) with rolling, smashing meth-drums (Klaus Schulze), lashings of organ, and gratuitous globs of electric cello abuse from the genius that is Conrad Schnitzler.

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