By Kieran Webber
‘Magnetic Seasons’ sees MUGSTAR shifting through a whole range of newfound sonic gears. Recorded at Liverpool’s Whitewood Studios, the band approached the ‘Magnetic Seasons’ sessions in an extended and open manner. Allowing time and space to experiment, improvising and feeling their way through playing, this free approach and method of working resulted in an extended body of material; nine intense and atmospheric soundscapes moving across an expansive and distinct four sides of vinyl.
The album is a thunderous psychedelic trip taking you through several portals and dimensions, travelling the soundscape of lucidity. The album is all instrumental apart from the spoken word intro on the closing song ‘Ascension Island’.
Tracks such as ‘Flemish Weave’ take you on a journey that is as mind bending as it is explosive, the warm opening that helps you transcend into the other world is quickly pulled from below your feet as it opens into a chaotic, bass driven freak out.
The beautiful use of layers in their music is what makes MUGSTAR shine through the rest when it comes to psychedelic music, imagine an onion if you will and its many layers.
The driven psychedelia is not the only element that stands out though, they manage to stray from repetitiveness with their desert space rock with tracks such as ‘Time Machine’ a slow building thumper of a song. They also slip in elements of sci fi to their music with tracks like ‘Remember Breathing’ a synth and organ pushed song that could easily be the backdrop to 2001: A Space Oddity.
Psychedelic music is a strange beast that can either be tamed and controlled or let loose and lost in the ether, Mugstar have controlled this strange and wonderful beast and used it to their will creating a magnificent piece of music that will leave you dreary and cross eyed.