I’m looking down the barrel of a 3-day weekend. What better way to celebrate that than partaking in a couple libations? Founders’ ‘Backwoods Bastard’ was my first delight. 11.2% of barrel-aged loveliness. It’s sweet, syrup-y, and just enough kick on the low end to let you know you’re not drinking something mass-produced. I’m currently enjoying a Samuel Adams’ ‘Maple Red’, which is part of their fall sampler collection. This is probably the best seasonal collection old Sammy Adams has put out, at least since that Winter Sampler from like six years ago where they had ‘Ol’ Fezziwig’ and their delicious ‘Chocolate Bock’. Good stuff, guys. Seriously.
Anyways, I took tomorrow off because I’m taking the two-hour drive south to pick up my oldest from school. She wanted to come home to see us(actually, she wanted to come home and see her friend but a dad can dream.) Mom usually makes the trek to pick our girl up, but my wife started a new job so she wouldn’t be able to head down till late. I have plenty of vacation time left for the year so I said what the hell and took the day off.
I’m sitting in the living room, enjoying the beers, and thinking about music. I thought I had my music year pretty much summed up, but then I hear Causa Sui’s brand new mini-album Vibraciones Doradas and now all bets are off, people. Holy moly what a monster that is. You’ll be hearing more about that album from me next week. Right now, we’re going back to last year.
Impetus – the force or energy with which a body moves
If you’re lucky enough to jump on Causa Sui’s releases early, occasionally those Danish mind melters offer a bonus 10″ record with a couple bonus nuggets of psych rock heaven that don’t end up on the album. They did it in 2014 with their Pewt’r Sessions 3, and they did it with Return To Sky last year. Of course I devoured it when it hit the front porch, but then it gets situated among the other LPs for a later listen. Well, in honor of Vibraciones Dorados, I thought I’d pull Return To Sky‘s bonus 10″ out and give it a re-listen.
So here’s the thing, just because these tracks don’t make it on the official LP doesn’t mean they aren’t worthy of that official release. I’ve got a feeling that Causa Sui go into the studio with lots of lagers and candles lit and vibes for miles and just let things flow. With four cats like Jonas Munk, Jess Kahr, Rasmus Rasmussen, and Jakob Skott the mojo must get flowing pretty quick. They’re all more than proficient at their instruments, and their solo output only proves they are one hell of a creative lot. So I’m sure everything they put to tape(or hard drive) is worthy of our ears. But albums, at least the great ones, need to flow in a certain manner in order for the right vibes to bubble to the surface. Return To Sky is perfect just the way it is. Any more or less and it would’ve been an entirely different beast altogether. So that goodness that doesn’t get used still deserves to be heard and devoured, hence the bonus 10″.
Side one is a 12-minute scorcher. Skott pushes the song along on a jazzy, breezy rhythm while Jonas Munk pushes a psychedelic trip with phaser-infused guitar. Kahr holds down the fort with some incredible bass lines while Rasmussen adds some Ray Manzarek-like keys to give the whole jam a grounded feel. The beauty of Causa Sui is that they sound so much larger than their 4-piece should. They create this universe of noise within the context of a 12-minute jam. Even with a song that doesn’t end up on an album, there’s more than enough mojo to go around.
Side two opens like Sleep, with Munk’s guitar getting as scuzzy as it gets(Matt Pike is smiling somewhere right now.) The track keeps the doom vibe up while Skott and Kahr lay a foundation the Empire State Building would be comfortable standing on. Rasmus adds to the psychedelic vibes with his keys that are like a mix of Moody Blues and King Crimson. Pretty soon Munk lays down some heavy blues licks down while the rest of the band continue to keep the psych fires burning. The track keeps that up through another 10 or so mind-melting minutes.
So sure, these two tracks were better left off the album. Return To Sky is a perfect entity the way it is. But with a bonus 10″ like this I feel like we’re given this inside look into the process of Causa Sui. There is this wide open space where the band let loose and jam on instincts and feel and it’s pretty fucking amazing. For my money, this is more along the lines of the great jazz greats. You have cues and keys and time signatures, but within those general lines you let the spirit take you where it may. Causa Sui amaze me every time I listen to them. There’s something new to explore and something new to discover on each of their records. And knowing their solo work very well I can say quite confidently that they’re pulling from all corners of the universe(how many corners are in the universe, anyways?) to create that all-immersive, all-encompassing sound that they create in their tiny corner of Odense, Denmark.
Enjoy the weekend. See you on the flip side. And keep an eye out for Vibraciones Dorados. It hits in two weeks. My review hits next week.