Tuesday, January 4, 2011

Ozric Tentacles - Erpland (1990)

Undoubtedly the coolest instrumental group on the planet, the Ozric Tentacles are among the founding fathers of neo-psychedelia, Psytrance, and numerous other electronic-related subgenres that people take for granted today. Or perhaps they're merely the missing link between the strange, experimental 70's and the rave culture of the 90's (and beyond). To think of it another way, who else has been blending psychedelic rock, prog., acid house, reggae and New Age since the mid 80's? Nobody, that's who!

Although technically not a debut recording, 1990's Erpland is where the Ozrics transitioned from a primarily cassette-selling, live-based underground entity into a full fledged band that could produce some mighty fine studio recordings as well. It's also nearly a decade ahead of it's time in terms of what you'll hear here - Ed Wynne's psychedelic soundwalling guitar and flute shpangling is dressed up by percussion and sprightly synthesizer refrains that recalls everything from Enigma to Burning Spear. In particular, 'Eternal Wheel' lays down hell of a groove from its opening twinkle and only gets sharper as the minutes parade forward, while the deep space Jamaican feel of 'Iscence' is a real wonder in and of itself, as well as being a personal favorite.

Albums like this are the reason people listen to music in the first place. Along with pretty much everything else they have done since their formation nearly three decades ago, the records these guys cut never seem to lose their luster in the face of changing tastes and demographics.

As the great Robert Ripley was known to say - "Believe it...or not!"

Listen Here - "Iscence"

Try It

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