It’s been a while since I’ve thrown some serious Northern European jam music at you, so I hope you’re ready for the smoking new release from Hills. Frid is full of spiraling Swedish psychedelia, droning guitars over tribal rhythms with the occasional haunting vocal or exotic flute or sitar to fill out the sound. Like countrymen Goat, they go deep but keep things listenable for maximum appeal. If you’re into the heady shit, this is one of the better releases in the genre this year.
Herbcraft: Wot Oz
Closer to home is Herbcraft, the Portland, Maine-based project of Matt Lajoie. Their new album, Wot Oz, out on the Woodsist label is an astronautical voyage of blurry soundscapes and vicious, guitar-bass-drums space-out jams. There is nothing static here: the music is constantly moving, shape-shifting and reinventing itself. Yes, it gets out there, but there are hooks and handles layered in there to grab onto should you lose your mind along the way. Featuring three longer jams and three shorter tracks, Wot Oz awaits.
Yonatan Gat: Director
One of my favorite new discoveries of 2015 has been guitarist Yonatan Gat and his superb trio, who has blown me away twice at live shows this year and who you should absolutely check out if he’s coming to play your town. While not a substitute for the live show, his first proper full-length solo album, Director, is still an excellent taste of the wild, intense guitar-bass-drum thrill ride that is Gat’s music. In a single jam, the trio will evoke Middle Eastern melodies, surf reverb, Latin rhythms, punkrock energy and deep jazz fusion thought experiments. This is high level stuff, but I think you can handle it. And if you get your fill and want more, he’s got an even newer two-track EP, called Physical Copy, for dessert.
Bandcamp (Physical Copy): https://yonatangat.bandcamp.com/album/physical-copy
Ancient Ocean: Blood Moon
And just in case the previous three picks didn’t get quite far enough out there for you, I’ve got one more…Blood Moon, the new album from Ancient Ocean. This debut is out on Beyond Beyond Is Beyond records, who have a running tab here at the RecommNeds since they pretty much only put out winners. This one is a headphone- jam, ambient dreamscape: relaxing, introspective mood-enhancer, a perfect come-down after listening to this week’s previous three recs. Give it a bit to sink in.