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Acid Mothers Temple and the Melting Paraiso U.F.O - Minstrel In The Galaxy

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Artist: Acid Mothers Temple and the Melting Paraiso U.F.O

Album: Minstrel In The Galaxy

Label: Riot Season

Review date: Mar. 9, 2005

Acid Mothers Temple get their freak on so frequently it’s almost impossible to keep up with the flood of sounds coming from their camp. Minstrel In The Galaxy is the latest full-length from Kawabata Makoto and co., and it’s a bold departure for those tuned-in only to the group’s speaker shredding, high-octane freakouts.

While Makoto’s electric guitar still hangs heavily over the recording, and Tsuyama Atsushi’s fingers remained glued to the strings of his “Monster Bass,” the music here is relatively subdued. Every good trip must have its peak, and the band releases the rock on occasion, but the majority of the record highlights the more subtle, meandering side of the band.

Two brief tracks — at least by AMT standards — bookend the disc, providing warm-up for and cool-down from the massive, 40-minute title track. “Cosmic Introduction” is a soft folk melody played on acoustic guitar that eventually folds into a lush wash of female vocals and warm drones. “St. Bel Canta” recycles the melody from the intro, and builds it into a smoky, late-night hymn.

“Minstrel In The Galaxy” begins softly, with brushed cymbals and plucked strings. It’s like listening to a hot-shit jazz group warming up for a gig on the red sands of Mars. Floating female vocals — courtesy of current AMT protégés Afrirampo — add to the futuristic lounge feel. As the band gains momentum, wordless wails screech through the mix while lumbering bass licks turn the tune into a hypnotic head-nodder. Eventually, after about half an hour, Makoto unleashes his guitar and sets the tune on a course straight for the center of the sun.

You could seriously brown a bong in the time it takes the song to come full circle, and the riffs are the sort that would make any self-respecting stoner slobber. But more impressive is the fact that AMT — a band so prolific that it seems they must burn out eventually — are still releasing song after epic song of wondrously mind-enhancing aural mayhem.

By Ethan Covey

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