AufhebenAlbum | The Brian Jonestown Massacre By Michael Wojtas
A move from the late '60s to the early '90s.
Brian Jonestown Massacre have often been pegged as ‘60s obsessed hero-worshippers, and bandleader Anton Newcomb's much-mythologized rockstar antics/breakdowns (as well as album titles like Their Satanic Majesties Second Request) have done little to dispel the notion that BJM are nothing more than born-in-the-wrong-decade burnouts. But they've always been more eclectic and willing to experiment than their revivalist reputation suggests, and Aufheben finds Newcomb getting more comfortable with the droning exoticism and acid house undercurrents he began exploring on 2010's Who Killed Sgt. Pepper?. Newcomb and company are finding new ways to smoothly integrate danceable grooves into their psychedelic aesthetic, dressing their swaying rhythms with baroque flourishes and hypnotic atmospherics. Aufheben isn't exactly rave-ready, but it's the kind of post-Madchester comedown album that one might reach for after spinning Spacemen 3's Recurring and before spacing off to Spectrum's sweet dreams opus Soul Kiss (Glide Divine). BJM's take on this distinctly early-‘90s kind of neo-psych is best represented by "Waking Up To Hand Grenades." Here, the band cross-pollinates a massive beat with Renaissance fair-ready flutes and harpsichord. The result sounds like the Stone Roses covering a dour, sophisticated Aftermath-era Stones ballad, turning it into something swirling and joyous. The track is followed by entrancing victory lap "Blue Order/New Monday," which offers BJM at their least rocking and most weightless, and suggests that Newcomb is in no way ready to stop rolling beatifically through the decades. Oh, and bonus points for the album cover's appropriately cosmic Carl Sagan tribute.
|I Want To Hold Your Other Hand|