The Bright Light Social Hour
Space Is Still the Place


4.5
superb

Review

by Conmaniac USER (72 Reviews)
August 17th, 2017 | 23 replies


Release Date: 2015 | Tracklist

Review Summary: astrophotography

Space is still the place, indeed. In fact it’s the only place -- a vast emptiness perpetually subsisting around our world, conjuring up rocks and balls of energy when it sees fit. If space could talk, I’m sure it’d stay silent.

If the universe could talk, I’m sure it wouldn’t even blink an eye at us. If the universe could make music, I’m sure it wouldn’t sound anything like this, but for the sake of humanity let’s pretend.

If the Earth could speak, I’m sure it would sigh. If the Earth could speak, I’m sure it wo-

But really, there’s no need to get so esoteric and metaphysical, as The Bright Light Social Hour aren’t anything more than a folk-tinged psychedelic rock band. Nothing groundbreaking (or should I say, universe-shattering) will be found on Space is Still the Place, as the album is merely an exploration into 80s trance pop and late 60s psychedelia. Yet, its familiarity is its most enthralling characteristic; a flattering mixture of genres and, yes, a slightly unique one at that. Throw on top of it all a fascination with mind-altering drugs -- how mindsets thusly change -- and the grandeur of space, and you have quite an adventure to say the least.

For an album so fascinated with space, it’s interesting to experience and unravel the unique landscapes constructed on this album. Opener ‘Sweet Madeline’ sees the band venturing into vast plains which are defined by the sweeping synths and a consistently rolling bassline. Appropriately titled ‘Sea of the Edge’ is just that, a track bubbling with life that is drenched with echoing reverb and a melody that just seems to wash over you. The band’s musicianship may be a bit simplistic and repetitive, but their production skills flourish on this album, helping them create an ever-changing vista that never gets old no matter how much you gaze at it. It’s just so clean sounding, even with the psychedelic influences muddying up the album. Highlight and closer ‘Escape Velocity’ comfortably manipulates a melody for 5 minutes before turning it into an explosive yet subdued psych rock jam. It is an escape from Earth, a venture past the wispy boundaries of our atmosphere and into the unknown, even if it is merely a fantasy for the group.

The Bright Light Social Hour understand the importance of space -- not just on a cosmic scale; they also explore the idea of space within music, as well: breathing room. ‘The Moon’ is just this, an acid-inspired gap in consciousness, some time to cool down. They prove on the americana-esque ‘Ghost Dance’ and ‘Ouroboros’ that they can also detonate, filling the space with cozy melodies and vigorous drumming. Yet an album without any space only inhibits the potency of its peaks. Space has always been a place and it only took a couple of acid heads and their instruments to realize that space is right here on Earth.

If space could talk, I’m sure this record would be its proxy.



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user ratings (24)
3.9
excellent


Comments:Add a Comment 
Conmaniac
August 17th 2017


25891 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

s/o to Jack my main boiii for proofreading this review. really fun band live, they nail the psych rock sound.

RichEvans
August 17th 2017


26 Comments


big fan of their self titled album but I haven't heard this yet. I'll have to check it out.

Conmaniac
August 17th 2017


25891 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

this is wayy different than their first album which was basically a folk punk effort. I actually talked to the guitarist/lead singer after the show about why they changed their sound and he said something along the lines of, "well there was a lot of time in between the two albums and let's just say we developed a different taste in music..." ahah

theBoneyKing
August 17th 2017


19678 Comments


Wonderful review Con, mindpos

I will say though that the first sentence of the second paragraph doesn't quite make sense though I understand what you're trying to get at.

Conmaniac
August 17th 2017


25891 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

idk i kinda like the jump from talking to blinking, gives it more life even if blinking isn't a form of speaking

thanks tho boney, if ur gonna get into psych rock this is the album for you I suspect. got that americana edge to it

Spacesh1p
August 17th 2017


7717 Comments


I opened for these guys with the high school band I was in around like 2010. That was my 15 minutes.

theBoneyKing
August 17th 2017


19678 Comments


Hmmm might give those tracks you point out as Americana tinged a listen. Funny that one of those is called Ouroboros actually because an Americana/folk artist I like released a largely psych album with that same name last year.

Conmaniac
August 17th 2017


25891 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

that's incredible Space because these guys opened for Car Seat Headrest when I saw them. how'd you get that opportunity?

Ouroboros is a sick track, def sample that and Sweet Madeline for a taste of how this album will sound

verdant
Staff Reviewer
August 17th 2017


2459 Comments


good shit con, will check

Conmaniac
August 17th 2017


25891 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

hope ya dig friendo!

clavier
Staff Reviewer
August 17th 2017


1106 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

Album's pretty good, good review con : )

Conmaniac
August 17th 2017


25891 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

much love claire! I will admit this is a lower 4.5 but seeing them live and the soundscapes they created in that format was breathtaking

Spacesh1p
August 17th 2017


7717 Comments


Con they played at the Masquerade in Atlanta and for whatever reason we got picked as the opener for a small show. They were wayyy smaller back then but played a killer show.

My other friend did most of the bookings at the time though so I dunno how it all came together but they were cool dudes.

Conmaniac
August 17th 2017


25891 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

that's really cool! I'll have to ask my drummer if he's ever played there since he was in a high school band in Atlanta.

Spacesh1p
August 17th 2017


7717 Comments


I think I still have a copy of their first album at my parents house.

Conmaniac
August 17th 2017


25891 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

not sure what to make of their first album tbh. it's rowdy folk punk / psych rock fun but nothing like this stuff

brainmelter
August 17th 2017


7183 Comments


nice write up, sounds interesting

Digging: Plague Rider - Rhizome

Conmaniac
August 17th 2017


25891 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

preciate it brain, ya big into psych?

brainmelter
August 18th 2017


7183 Comments


not huge but I fux with it definitely

Conmaniac
August 18th 2017


25891 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

i fux with psychs in all forms



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