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Progressive Rock CD Reviews

├śresund Space Collective

Chatoyant Breath

Review by Gary Hill

This new release from Øresund Space Collective continues their fine instrumental space rock tradition. As is the case with the rest of their catalog, these jams are improvised. Nothing here changes or grows quickly, but there is a lot of growth along the road nonetheless. This set consists of five epic length pieces across two CDs (labeled as "galleries"). If you dig instrumental space rock that sets up a great groove, you should check this out.

This review is available in book format (hardcover and paperback) in Music Street Journal: 2018  Volume 4 at lulu.com/strangesound.

Track by Track Review
Gallery One
         
Exhibit One: Peaceful Patterns

As this coalesces into existence, there is an almost symphonic space vibe at first. It works forward to more pure space rock music from there, though. It doesn't change quickly, but rather evolves gradually, working upward as it does. The piece is an epic, weighing in at more than 28 and a half minutes of music. I really dig the musical interplay as this grows a lot. There are some particularly cool sounds and melodies built into this. It really gets into some soaring territory. There are some parts where the guitar makes me think of what you might get if Jerry Garcia had jammed with Hawkwind. There are a lot of peaks and valleys built into this ride. The closing bit on this is created by keyboards that segue into the next number.

Exhibit Two: Chatoyant Breath
The keyboards that ended the last piece bring this one into being. Lasting more than 36 minutes, this track is even more massive than the one that preceded it was. This builds out into another killer space rock exploration. If anything, this one is even more effective than the opener was. I really love the guitar work around the 12 minute mark. It's positively inspired. This thing gets into some seriously rocking territory as it pounds forward. It's a real powerhouse, actually. There are some hints of reggae by around the 25 minute mark. There are some parts later that are so hard rocking that they almost border on metallic.
Gallery Two

         

Exhibit Three: Angular Ambrosia

While this is not a huge change, it powers in with some killer jamming that has a great groove. There are definitely things here that make me think of early Pink Floyd to a large degree. Late in the track a distorted bass jam takes over and the cut works out from there in a killer Pink Floyd-like space jam. Echoey, trippy stuff emerges further down this musical road. Some pretty awesome jamming emerges from there. At over 28 minutes of music this is another epic piece.

Exhibit Four: Turbulent Trepidation
In some ways this comes in as more of a mainstream number. Don't get me wrong, we still get all the jamming space rock we'd expect. It's just that this feels a little more "song-like" than most of the rest of the music here does. We get some killer music and some great changes along this road. At a little less than 23 and a half minutes long, this is the second shortest piece here, as everything on this album qualifies as epic in terms size. Somehow I can make out hints of Iron Butterfly at times on this piece, particularly as it is building upward near the half-way mark. There is some powerhouse guitar jamming on that section, too. I really enjoy the trippier kind of jam that emerges around the 15 minute mark. It really takes things in cool directions.  There is a short mellow bit at the end.
Exhibit Five: Celestial Sensation
You won't find a lot of albums where a song that's almost 19 and a half minutes long is the shortest piece on the set, but such is the case here. Rising up tentatively, this starts to converge after a bit. Eventually a rocking space groove rises up, and they work forward from there. There are some killer guitar explorations around the half-way mark of the piece. I love the mellower guitar driven movement around the 15  minute mark. Somehow it makes me think of a space rock version of something Robin Trower might do with a bit of Al Di Meola added to the mix. This really works to some jazzy territory as it evolves.
 
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