Hidria Spacefolk — Symbiosis
(Silence SLC-009, 2002, CD)
by Jon Davis, Published 2003-02-01I’m not going to compare Hidria Spacefolk to Ozric Tentacles – I’d rather listen to Symbiosis again (well, so much for that plan). Anyway, I’m happy to report that Space Rock is alive and well. Think of the best of those long instrumental tracks Gong did on the Radio Gnome Trilogy. Now imagine a band that specializes in just that kind of thing. The arrangements feature a core of bass, drums, guitar, and keys augmented by flute, marimba, sitar, and various percussion. Space Rock is always a balancing act between groove and repetition. It can’t really groove without repeating patterns, but patterns repeated too much without variation get boring (barring the presence of mind-altering substances, but that’s another story). Hidria maintains perfect balance, keeping the groove going as the arrangements develop, often by carrying over an element from one section to the next, a burbling synth sequence, for example. There’s also some welcome variety between tracks: time signatures, synth and guitar tones, background atmospherics, instrumentation, and so on. The mallets bring later Gong to mind occasionally, Gazeuse or Shamal, but they don’t dominate the arrangements, just add some spice on a couple of tunes, providing a break from the keyboards. It’s been ages since I heard such a knob-twiddling analog synth orgy, with filters sweeping and echoes panning. Did I mention it sounds great on headphones?
Related artist(s): Hidria Spacefolk
Gong Announces UK Tour for 2020 – Having spent the last few years touring the world, including dates in Japan with psych legend Steve Hillage, multiple headline European tours and festivals, America’s Cruise to the Edge festival, a South America headline tour, and a headline performance at Tomorrow Festival in China, the band have won the hearts of both traditional and modern Gong fanbases. During this live journey, Gong has delved further into the truly psychedelic, exploratory, and mind-expanding side of the music. » Read more
Wolfgang Dauner RIP – Pianist Wolfgang Dauner, one of the pioneers of both European free jazz and jazz rock, has died at the age of 84. With his own groups and with the United Jazz+Rock Ensemble, his playing and compositions were a prominent presence in European jazz from the mid-60s until just recently. » Read more
Michael Allison RIP – Michael Allison, who since 1997 has been recording as Darshan Ambient, passed away on January 9th after a long and brave battle with cancer. He has been at at the forefront of the new ambient/electronic music scene, with over eighteen releases to his credit. » Read more
Neil Peart RIP – One of rock music's defining drummers has died at the age of 67. Neil Peart's work with Rush provided one of the templates for percussion in rock, and he certainly ranks in the top ten most influential drummers of the 20th Century. Peart retired from playing in 2015 due to health issues, and succumbed to brain cancer on January 7, 2020. » Read more