Astral Social Club & Grumbling Fur Time Machine Orchestra – Plasma Splice Trifle

plasmaPicture a hushed moment after the last striking note of a concert. The heavy reverb of a guitar fades away. The final cluster-chorded plunk of a pissed off pianist turns to ether. The jubilant collection of pitch-perfect harmonies, that raised the hairs on your arm like thousands of micro-zombie Jesuses, collectively float off to heaven. That small gap of time before those rapturous shrieks, screams, or golf claps invade like some Genghis Khan kind of motherfuckers. That world. That pregnant pause. That loud silence. Now what if you could stretch that shit? What if you zoomed in on that point and created an album out of it? Would it sound psychedelic? You bet your fucking ass it would. Would it inspire deep introspection thoughts and drug-like symptoms through its sound waves alone? Hells ya it would. Would it be ambient-like but impossible to merely throw on in the background and demanding of your immediate attention? I think you get the fucking point.

Look, I know how the band name appears. It’s a mouthful. But there’s an unspoken rule to bands and their names: better the name the worse the band. And you can drift through your brain’s band name inventory to find those few exceptions that prove the rule but, nevertheless, band names don’t mean shit. It’s the music that fucking matters. And this shit is worth it.

On this tripped out experience of an album you’re faced with Neil Campbell, the post-punk king and name behind Astral Social Club. Dude’s made a name for himself creating music of the edge of what’s definable. Alongside this you’ve got Daniel O’Sullivan and Alexander Tucker, the names behind Grumbling Fur Time Machine Orchestra. These guys are stranger than drugged out mythical gatekeepers that you find in fantasy novels and only speak in riddles. Some of their shit is truly fucked up. With these three combined, you get an album that fills the room with glossolalic murmurings, ambient chords, and drony bass lines. Now I know this can all sound a bit much. But on hearing its optimistic ambient-like chords and rhythms, Stars of the Lid was the first band that came to mind. Yet as I went to delightfully put it on in the background and continue on with my day, I found myself throwing down a thousand-yard stare in every direction and drooling onto the floor like a narcotically-induced coma patient. Shit stole my fucking consciousness and threw me waist deep into gleeful existence loud with a rapturous static. If you don’t give this focus, it will seem like noise. But if you give it the attention it deserves, it’s an optimistic auditory befuddling that extends silences and instills meaning into what was once mundane. In short, it’s a motherfucking trip.


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