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Astral Magic

Lords of Space

Review by Gary Hill

If you like space rock with plenty of psychedelia in the mix, you really need to check this set out. I'm reminded a lot of times of Hawkwind, but there are other reference points, too. One track seriously has some early Pink Floyd elements. There are 60s pop angles here, psychedelia and more. All in all, this is a particularly effective and accessible set of impressive space rock.

This review is available in book (paperback and hardcover) form in Music Street Journal: 2022  Volume 3. More information and purchase links can be found at: garyhillauthor.com/Music-Street-Journal-2022.

Track by Track Review
Lords of Space
This jumps right into the title track with a chugging space rock jam that feels underway. There are some 60s psychedelic vibes to the vocals, but overall this is classic space rock with some hints of hippie flowers and peace signs. It's a great tune and an excellent way to start the album. I dig the instrumental excursion into Hawkwind-like space later. From what lyrics I can make out on this, I think the song is literally an homage to Hawkwind.
Chakra Vimana
The mix of sounds here is largely the same. This is another driving, rocking jam that's very much in the vein of Hawkwind. This thing gets into some almost Yes-like jamming at times. It's a killer track that takes the concepts of the opener and expands on them.
Head Encounter
The tone of the vocals is a bit of a change on this. The cut is another driving space rock based number that really rocks.
The Fall of Atlantis
A slower moving and lush cut, this is a cool proggy space rock excursion. The dense arrangement of keyboard layers is all class. There are some killer lines of melodic guitar soloing on this instrumental track.
Set on Flames
I really love this track. It's one of the highlights here. It has a driving, early Pink Floyd kind of sound at its heart, but there are still hints of Hawkwind in the mix.
Android Rebellion
Back into more purely Hawkwind-like zones, this has some cool hooks, great jamming and plenty of tasty space.
Run or Hide
A high energy space rock song, this is all class. There are definite Hawkwind leanings, but the keyboard heavy arrangement has plenty of other things at play, too. It's one of the highlights of the set. Given everything here, that says a lot.
Cosmic Games
Hard rocking Hawkwind-like space rock brings this into being. The cut has some fun hooks and plenty of space rock meat on the bones. The jam later in the track makes me think of the Levitation era of Hawkwind to a large degree.
Child of the Wild
The first of two bonus tracks on the CD version of the album, this is another slab of high energy space rock. It's quite the ride.
The Undead
This is another driving, Hawkwind-like, space rock piece. It's also another bonus track. It's a real powerhouse and a great way to end the set.
 
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