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Some refer to Ozric Tentacles as a funky space-rock outfit. Others file them under the trippy psychadelic genre. Believe it or not there are even some crazy folks who believe that their style of music is progressive rock Throughout the course of Strangeitude
the band combines all of these genres together to create some truly unique and interesting music. The song structures are similar to progressive rock groups such as King Crimson and Pink Floyd while being funky and psychadelic enough to reach out to fans of many diverse genres.
If you’re knew to this strange genre hyrbid such as I was then Ozric Tentacles Strangeitude
is a great place to start. The albums opener White Rhino Tea
will immediately grab your attention with it’s hard hitting guitar riffs and sprinkly keyboard twinkles. It has a very upbeat and raw nature, the music almost sounds like a combination of soft electronica and hard rock. The strangest thing about the tune is that it is not very spacey at all, the same thing goes for the second track Sploosh
. Sinister keyboard squirts bubble as percussion comes in giving the song a heavier sound. The music eventually bursts into blasted funk pop propelled by a slinky bassline and some more of those sublime keyboard sparkles.
While the first two tracks are excellent in their own way the albums highlight goes to Bizarre Bazaar
. A swirling flute line plays over hard hitting drums giving the song a compelling and jazzy nature. This goes on for quite a while until it is interrupted by a screeching guitar solo that howls, whines, and whales on for quite some time. Clocking in at 4:06 Bizarre Bazaar
is short and sweet making it an accessible highlight. The album closes out with Weirditude
and it’s easy to call it the “weirdest” song off the album. It’s comprised of lazery synth effects that overlap some spacey guitar swirls. This track has the most space-rock type of atmosphere, while it is fairly quick-paced the keyboard effects simply dominate as they sparkle and shine over some simple drum beats.
While half of these songs are quick and spicy the other four all extend over seven minutes long and really capture a spacey feel. Saucers
has to be the most progressive song off the album. Featuring twangy acoustics, loopy effects, mesmerizing guitar work and lush keyboard tones the song covers a lot of ground and progresses through many different styles of music. While the tune is very laid-back and can get quite dull at moments it still showcases Ozric Tentacles talent very well. The title track Strangeitude
is probably the worst song features on the record, as it is also one of the longest. It focuses on ambient woodwinds as they prowl and hiss over apocalyptic effects and while it possesses a calm, eerie nature it gets quite tiresome and dull. Live Throbbe
starts off ambient and relaxed until a vicious attack of brass and woodwind instruments take control frantically buzzing and growling into the microphone. If you don’t have a good idea of the sound it captures an Egyptian sort of vibe and whenever I listen to the song it instantly reminds me of pyramids. While the music takes a while to build up it’s worth the wait.
Now I’m no guitarist, but Ed Wynne’s guitar playing is superb. He goes from slow, angular guitar rhythms to adrenaline pumping solo’s showcasing unique creativity as well as talent and range. The guitar playing tends to take control on some of the lengthier tunes and while it doesn’t do a particularly at keeping ones attention it delivers some zesty and funky grooves. The bass and keyboard playing give the music a playful and electronic vibe; when you mix together some swift guitar playing with bubbly keyboard sounds and kinky bass cuts the result is good.
If there’s a problem with Ozric Tentacles it’s that their songs can get quite dull. Since every track is instrumental Strangeitude
suffers from monotony. There are enough zany hooks and grooves throughout the album but on some of the longer tunes you will be leaning towards that skip button. Strangeitude
is flooding with various keyboard effects, psychadelic woodwinds, and some exhilarating guitar work. It’s obvious that this record is not for everyone yet it’s an interesting and trippy adventure for any fan of music.