Eternal Tapestry : Wild Strawberries

eternal tapestrySo who in the hell is Eternal Tapestry, and how did they get in my ears? I don’t recall ever having a conversation with anyone regarding this band. No “Hey, you should check out this band called Eternal Tapestry. They’re pretty cool”, or “This band Eternal Tapestry is right up your alley. You need to listen to them.” I don’t recall that talk. Much like the music they make, they appeared from the ether and were “just there”. They make music that could be described as psychedelic, or atmospheric. There are guitars that play solos, and drums that play hypnotic beats. There’s feedback, drones, some keyboards, and even some saxophone thrown in for good measure. There songs are expansive(long), and they tend to be of the heady kind where you buy the ticket, you take the ride. You don’t have to be f****d up to enjoy them, but if you happen to be you may even get more out of what they commit to tape. They title their songs things like “Cosmic Manhunt”, “The Hidden Void”, and “When I Was In Your Mind”, and their album covers resemble Bob Pepper and Frank Franzetta artwork.

So who are Eternal Tapestry? Are they space marauders travelling through galaxies spreading their spaced-out sounds? Are they crazy hippies losing their minds in a cabin somewhere in the woods of the Pacific Northwest making drones and buzzes day and night? Or maybe they’re just some nerdy guys that like sci fi and jamming in a living room, seeing how long they can sustain a single note?

I think they might be all three of those things and that’s quite all right. You see, this band called Eternal Tapestry just released one of the most dense, heady, freaky trips of an album you’ll hear all year. Wild Strawberries takes all those elements; the psych free jam, the atmospheric noise, the quiet interludes, and the chaotic noise squalls and combine them to make their best album to date.

“Mountain Primrose” opens the album. Eternal Tapestry take their time getting to the destination. Where is that destination? Hell if I know. It’s the journey that matters, man. There’s reverbed vocals that act as just another sonic layer rather than telling a story. It’s half nightmare and half fever dream that leads into the title track. “Wild Strawberries” is acid-fried psych rock. Imagine Surrealistic Pillow mixed with the DNA of The Piper at the Gates of Dawn and you’d have an idea of what’s happening here. It’s 15 minutes of slow-burning space rock. “Enchanter’s Nightshade” sounds like skronky sci-fi blues. Some slow moving spaceship makes it’s way across the galaxy, skunky smoke billowing from a hole on top. At over 16 minutes, you will be mopping up your psyche after this track fades.

Previous albums, like Beyond The 4th Door, Palace Of The Night Skies, and A World Out Of Time have toyed with long form free jams like this, but Wild Strawberries commits. With four of the eight songs over the 10 minute mark this is a true blue double LP made for hazy basement listening sessions and long stares into the abyss.

The second half is a different beast altogether. “Woodland Anemone” is a two-minute synth exploration that sets the tone for side three and four. We’re treated to synth drones and ambient textures in the excellent “Maidenhair Spleenwort”. The organ is reminiscent of Terry Riley’s work in the early 70s, and the repetition of “Lace Fern” brings Riley’s 1975 masterstroke Descending Moonshine Dervishes to mind. “Pale-Green Sedge” and its white calm pushes us into the epic closer “White Adder’s Tongue”. It’s noisy beginnings build into a cacophony of noise built on keyboards, drones, feedback and percussion. It’s loud, abrasive, and immaculate.

So who are Eternal Tapestry? I don’t think it matters. What matters is that they exist and they made Wild Strawberries, a sprawling double LP mind melter of the highest order.

9.2 out of 10

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