The Spacious Mind — Sailing the Seagoat
(Garageland GRCD 018, 1996, CD)
by Dan Casey, 1996-08-01:
Here's an interesting concept. Take simple folk ideas, add a little psychedelic electronics and synth, add a few flute and bongo lines and some very radio-friendly vocals and brew up some long, explorative songs. This, their third album, consists of five tracks in the eight to 11 minute range, which is a good six or seven minutes shorter than the averages for the last two albums. A few cautions: brace yourself for 45 minutes of nonstop acoustic guitar chord strumming. Right from the beginning, the strumming starts and it literally doesn't let up until the end. The other big point of contention is the quality of the electronics: they are overall amateurish, unoriginal, and thin. The vocals are well-done, but more MTV-ish than you might expect in this genre (lyrics are in well-pronounced English). The bottom line is that this album has a decent premise, but the execution is below average. The music just moves along slowly, never really building to anything. And there are other bands merging the same elements much more successfully. Italy's Dunwich is a prime example, and more original to boot. However, if you enjoyed their prior efforts, this too will satisfy.
by Rob Walker, 1996-08-01:
This third album from The Spacious Mind delivers more of their patented spacy psychedelia. Those familiar with their earlier releases know exactly what to expect; E-bowed guitar leads over a backdrop of swirling synth textures, acoustic guitars, hand percussion and occasional other instruments. The music is mellow, meditative, and hypnotic, smoothly flowing along avoiding any sudden moves. Some vocals occasionally work their way up through the mix, but the majority of this is instrumental. The four long pieces are not as much developments of musical ideas as idle atmospheric soundscapes, which fade in, flow along for a while, and then fade out. The band seems to have mellowed over its three albums; Seagoat has a noticeably diminished variety in the songs and a reduced sense of direction and dynamics compared to the earlier albums, which is to say, this album can be pretty repetitive on a certain level. The sound quality and production, however, are quite excellent, as on the previous discs, and the richness of the various instrumental timbres really benefit from the spaciousness of the mix. There's not a whole lot of musical action on Seagoat, but slip on a pair of headphones and this band which epitomizes spacy psychedelic prog will leave you in a blissful trance... or asleep, depending on your predilection for this genre.
Related artist(s): The Spacious Mind
Freedom to Spend Unearths June Chikuma's Archives – Jun (June) Chikuma is well known for her video game and anime soundtracks, but she also released an album of experimental electronic music back in 1986 called Divertimento where she indulged the kind of spontaneity that wouldn't work in a soundtrack. RVNG Int'l label Freedom to Spend is bringing this overlooked item to broader attention with a deluxe reissue. » Read more
Seaprog 2019 Lineup Almost Complete – The Seaprog festival in Seattle is scheduled for June 7-9 this year, and they've announced their lineup of performers. The revitalized Trettioåriga Kriget will cap Friday night, perennial favorites Marbin are on Saturday, and District 97 will finish off the fest on Sunday night. In support, they've booked a stellar variety of artists from the Northwest and around the world, including EchoTest, Markus Reuter and Trey Gunn, and the live debut of the amazing Troot project. » Read more
You Can Be Part of an Ambient Electronic Project – The Gesture of History is a new electronic project put together by Sam Rosenthal of Black Tape for a Blue Girl, Steve Roach, and violist Sam Shadow. The music started as an instrumental track Rosenthal was working on for a Black Tape album, but took on a life of its own and demanded further enhancements. The majority of the funds raised will go to manufacturing costs for LP and CD editions, as well as other items as detailed on the Kickstarter page. » Read more
Jazz Composer Mark Lomax, II Releases Epic 12CD Set – In addition to being a fine jazz drummer, Dr. Mark Lomax, II is a composer in residence at Ohio State University, where he has been very busy on the compositional front. The year 2019 is the 400th anniversary of the arrival of the first ship bringing African slaves to North America, and in commemoration of this, Lomax has produced 400: An Afrikan Epic, a 12 volume set of CDs featuring a variety of different musical ensembles. » Read more