Samsara Blues Experiment
One with the Universe


4.0
excellent

Review

by Raul Stanciu STAFF
May 13th, 2017 | 60 replies


Release Date: 2017 | Tracklist

Review Summary: Losing a member forced them to up their game and they delivered...

One of the biggest heavy psych rock bands, Samsara Blues Experiment return to once more show everybody how it's done. Four years lapsed since Waiting for the Flood graced us with its presence and during this relative downtime, bassist Richard Behrens left the group, leaving rhythm guitarist Hans Eiselt to fill this void. As a three-piece, they sought to maintain the same multifaceted atmosphere while also pushing forward into uncharted territory. Album opener, 'Vipassana' brings all influences and directions into one engaging trip by delivering punchy riffs amid ethereal leads and pounding drums. Starting with a short, cool nod to Santana's 'Singing Winds/Crying Beasts', we are soon welcomed by dreamy sound scapes, leading us astray. Minutes later, they let everything soar, until synths take over for an Eastern-inspired segment that in turn gives way to some of the hardest hitting moments in their catalog so far. This is undoubtedly one of the top tracks these guys offered us yet.

Moving on, 'Sad Guru Returns' & 'Glorious Daze' are shorter tunes that nicely contrast each other. The former is a straightforward, barn burning instrumental jam that beautifully merges melodic and aggressive riffs altogether, whereas the latter acts mainly as a more subdued listen. The bass effortlessly builds a groove, enhanced by guitar licks and occasional vocals, then slowly grows into a mid-tempo ditty. Three minutes in, the dynamics abruptly shift, turning the song into a bouncy rocker. Two things stand out from the first listen: Christian's voice gets better with each album, plus, the band managed to compress several sections in order to have more impact as well as maintaining that element of surprise which is very hard to find in this type of music these days. Yes, that means the endless, hazy psychedelia got restrained, however, the newfound clarity is just as good.

As expected, the title track is another all encompassing flight, paying homage to Indian raga music and classic '70s prog. Samsara always pulled these off very well and at this point, they're clearly embedded in their style, being lovely interspersed throughout the LP. The keyboard parts have multiplied, but they bring back that extra layer lost by remaining a trio. Moreover, drummer Thomas Vedder improved significantly during the last couple of records, now being a driving force rather than just accompanying the other instruments. Like a coda to this epic journey, 'Eastern Sun & Western Moon' proves us once more how good is One with the Universe. In between riffage, synths are doubling the Hammond organ touches and the guitar takes off on final solos. When the last windy notes fade away, you just want to go through it all again. All this time spent in the rehearsal room jamming and consolidating strengths did Samsara Blues Experiment only good. They delivered us an impressive, mature album that doesn't feel stale or boring at all. I can only hope more like these are coming our way.




Recent reviews by this author
Poseidon (UK) PrologueLaibach Also Sprach Zarathustra
Amplifier Trippin' with Dr. FaustusEgypt Cracks and Lines
Sasquatch ManeuversMoby More Fast Songs About the Apocalypse
user ratings (43)
Chart.
3.8
excellent

Comments:Add a Comment 
insomniac15
Staff Reviewer
May 13th 2017


4308 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Excellent album from one of the best bands in the genre. Not sure what to think about the artwork though.



Full streams:

Youtube - http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FR1whP2G06s&t=4s

Bandcamp - http://samsarabluesexperiment.bandcamp.com/album/one-with-the-universe

Digging: Nine Inch Nails - Add Violence

manosg
Staff Reviewer
May 13th 2017


10412 Comments


Need to check this one. I'm picking up some Santana vibes from the artwork for some reason.

Sweet review as always Raul.

AdolfChrist
May 13th 2017


11248 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Yeah the artwork isnt very good. Also that album title is the most generic title you could come up with for a psych record. Anyways, stoked to jam this. Band jams.

Digging: Lemontrip - Nowhere

insomniac15
Staff Reviewer
May 13th 2017


4308 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

@Manosg - Thanks! Yeah, on the last couple of albums they went on this early '70s direction, which is nice. When I heard Vipassana's opening chords I instantly had 'Singing Winds/Crying Beasts' in my mind.



@Adolf - Yeah, the name and artwork are meh, but the music is great!







rockandmetaljunkie
May 13th 2017


6886 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Was wondering if you would review that. Glad you did man. Have only checked their debut so far, it was actually fantastic. In due time i"ll check all of their albums. Can't wait to see these guys live in two weeks.

rockandmetaljunkie
May 13th 2017


6886 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

@AdolfChrist



the music is great though and that's all that matters. Never judge a book by its cover.

greg84
Emeritus
May 13th 2017


7586 Comments


I need to listen to this. Great review.

Digging: Queens of the Stone Age - Villains

Flugmorph
May 13th 2017


16602 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

wtf is that cover art

Digging: Brian Eno - Ambient 4: On Land

manosg
Staff Reviewer
May 13th 2017


10412 Comments


Oh I'm definitely picking some Santana vibes from Vipassana; especially after having jammed Singing Winds, Crying Beasts. Nice catch, Raul.

jemaiseyeti
May 13th 2017


67 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Ordered today, sweet album. I like Waiting for the Flood a bit more though.

Buccaneer
May 13th 2017


732 Comments


These guys played a festival in Camden and clashed with Sleep. I skipped out the last 20 minutes of Sleep to catch these guys. Holy fuck. These guys slayed.

Nice review, looking forward to listening to this!

insomniac15
Staff Reviewer
May 13th 2017


4308 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Thanks!



Yeah, they're ace live and this album is just as good as Long Distance Trip.

Evokaphile
May 13th 2017


3947 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

Right on. I was actually gonna review this. Album rules!

Digging: Incantation - Profane Nexus

insomniac15
Staff Reviewer
May 13th 2017


4308 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

If you have something written you should post it, why not?

Evokaphile
May 13th 2017


3947 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

Its a haphazard opening paragraph at this point that doesnt cover any ground this one hasnt so its kinda moot. I try to only review stuff that doesnt have a review yet.

Pho3nix
May 13th 2017


303 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

Nice review, haven't listened to 'em for a couple years but I really enjoy their debut

Evokaphile
May 13th 2017


3947 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

Theyve only gotten better since then imo. That said, I dont think this is their best album.

AdolfChrist
May 13th 2017


11248 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

"the music is great though and that's all that matters. Never judge a book by its cover."



apparently you missed the "Anyways, stoked to jam this. Band jams" part of my comment.

rockandmetaljunkie
May 13th 2017


6886 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

i didn't, i just think these are silly little complaints

AdolfChrist
May 13th 2017


11248 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

oh, i guess we're not supposed to talk about album art or titles. oops!



You have to be logged in to post a comment. Login | Create a Profile





FAQ // STAFF & CONTRIBUTORS // SITE FORUM // CONTACT US

Bands: A B C D E F G H I J K L M N O P Q R S T U V W X Y Z


Site Copyright 2005-2017 Sputnikmusic.com
All Album Reviews Displayed With Permission of Authors | Terms of Use | Privacy Policy