Occasionally a band will pop up on my radar that I missed. Sure, it happens. When there’s a whole world filled with amazing artists the odds you’re going to miss one or two first time around are pretty great. Fortunately what that means is that you’ve got plenty of opportunities to find them somewhere down the line. It also means that we’ll never run out of solid music to fall head over heals with. So when someone tells you there’s just nothing good to listen to anymore you can tell them with confidence that they’re completely full of shit. Open your eyes and open your ears because there’s a band out there just waiting to blow your mind.
One band like that for me is Germany’s Electric Moon. The three-piece stoner/psych/doom rockers are a force to be reckoned with. Laying waste to minds with a heavy dose of motorik beats, fuzzed-out guitars, ethereal vocals, and plenty of sonic noise boxes to satisfy the most ardent of space travelers, Electric Moon are heady metal wizards of the highest order.
For years these three musicians, which include Komet Lulu on bass and vocals, Marcus Schnitzler on drums, and Sula Bassana on guitars and everything else, work up a kind of galactic magic on their records. Long form jams, milky way incantations, and dystopian scores to falling into the humming pit of eternity.
Electric Moon have a discography filled with so many sonic realms that it can be a bit overwhelming to know where to start. That’s why I started my journey with their last release, the hypnotic Stardust Rituals. This is the portal I’ve chosen, and I feel this is going to be a long, strange, and beautiful trip.
With four tracks at over 45 minutes this is not a trip for the faint of heart. If buzzing electronics, hypnotic vocals, dirge-y guitars, and pummeling drums aren’t your thing then maybe put on your big boy(or big girl) pants and think about expanding your mind a bit. If you dig getting those pistons firing in your skull and losing yourself in the abyss of psych/Krautrock heaven, then welcome.
Album opener “The Loop” is the doorway into Stardust Rituals‘ cavernous world. Melancholy organ greets you at the door, with Komet Lulu’s vocals wavering through a Leslie speaker, giving the song a classic psych sound. Late 60s vibes abound, the song builds throughout its 8-minute runtime. It’s like a viking funeral put to music. We’re then led into the doom-laden beauty that is “Stardust(The Picture)”, a monumental doom rock track of epic proportions. Bits of Sabbath, Electric Wizard, and Trouble bubble up from the crumbling ground below, like magma from a long dormant volcano. This is the kind of psych rock I live for. Reverberating distortion and mellotron collide to give us a soundtrack to a world heaving its final breath. Gorgeous doom abound.
“Astral Hitch Hike” is a sitar-laden interlude, mysterious and ethereal, that leads us into the mammoth album closer “Live Forever Now(You Will)”, a 22-minute journey that feels like slowly falling back to earth from outer space. Melodic guitar, echo-laden sitar, and a solid rhythmic foundation works up slowly into an all-out assault of the senses that fades into a wistful ending complete with mellotron strings and vocals that seem to emanate from the clouds.
Stardust Rituals is a heavy, gorgeous journey. One that leaves you wanting to drop the needle at the beginning and take it again and again. I’m excited to deep dive into Electric Moon’s musical landscape and see what I can find.
8.6 out of 10