Once in a while something comes along and really gets my brain popping. The synapses spark, the pistons chug, and the mind gets to fully engaged mode. This new release coming from Behind The Sky Music in June is my current obsession, and I can’t wait to fully engulf myself in it.
Portals: A Komische Journey through Outer Worlds and Inner Space is a double LP collection of some of today’s most prolific heavy synth/electronic artists setting the wayback machine to 1972 and getting into full on Berlin School/Komische mode. Songs made to take you to the middle of space and drop you for some interstellar floating and existential drifting. Got a sensory deprivation tank, some mushrooms, and a turntable? Cool, then I’ve got the soundtrack for the psilocybin-induced regression session. It’s called Portals: A Komische Journey through Outer Worlds and Inner Space.
The album is 13 tracks on four sides of wax for you to jump into head first and forget about the outside world, at least until the light dims on Side D and reality begins to seep back into your existence. Or, you could just drop the needle on Side A and start that journey all over again. This is a kind of record experience that just doesn’t come along too often, so engage with it as often as you can.
Who’s on this, you wonder? Artists like Tungsten Mountain, Lisa Bella Donna, and Polypores. d’Voxx, Steve Roach, and Pittsburgh synth master Steve Moore also graces us with their frontal lobe-melting powers. Right now you can listen to three tracks, Ian Boddy’s “Omicron”, Nigel Mullaney’s “Kessel Run”, and In The Branches w/Blutech “Celestial”. All of these are proof in the pudding that this record is a must for all you serious space cadets and analog synth heads out there.
I can’t get enough of these three tracks out currently, with “Omnicron” just an absolute lush soundscape that I find myself not wanting to leave for days on end. Can I fit a keg of beer, some restaurant-style tortilla chips, and white queso in there with me? If so, I’m out for the remainder of the weekend. And when I hear “Celestial” I feel like it’s 1974; I’m wearing navy-blue polyester bell bottoms and a burnt orange turtleneck, and I’m staring at the sign off test card on my parents 24″ Zenith console TV. And “Kessel Run” is foreboding and beautiful(check out the video below.)
And that album art? Holy shit. Eric Adrian Lee’s work is so pronounced and locks into everything he creates visuals for. From Repeated Viewing to Timothy Fife to all the amazing work he’s done for Spun out of Control, his work is synonymous with visceral and engaging. His work for Portals is some of his best. It’s like Dune-meets-Phase IV-meets Billy Pilgrim on Tralfamadore in Slaughterhouse Five. I imagine that’s me walking across that sandy expanse. I may not want to live in that album art, but I would love to visit.
So if I haven’t convinced you to run, not walk, over to Behind The Sky’s Bandcamp page and hit the “buy now” button on your preferred listening medium, well then maybe we’re just not friends. Maybe you need help. Maybe some therapy. You know, there’s this album that might help. It’s called Portals: A Komische Journey through Outer Worlds and Inner Space. It’s out next month….
Preorder Portals over at Behind The Sky’s Bandcamp page. It’s out in June. Vinyl is limited.