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Starving Daughters - Strange Valleys CD (album) cover

STRANGE VALLEYS

Starving Daughters

 

Psychedelic/Space Rock

4.82 | 3 ratings

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BrufordFreak
5 stars Funky Canterbury; this year's equivalent to 2017's Suspension by fellow West Coaster Brian Ellis. Chris Tillotson and collaborators have pulled together such a great collection of psychedelic funk prog instrumentals that I find myself asking, "Who are these guys? Why have I never heard of them?" And, of course, I've got to go back into their discography to hear the other albums that led to this masterpiece.

1. "Sunburn" (3:14) the West Coast funk reincarnation of Steve Hillage?! (9.5/10)

2. "Night Stalker" (3:08) great groove with amazing weave of acoustic guitar, electric guzz guitar and synth. The synth solos steal this one away! Best song on the album and in the running for Song of the Year! (10/10)

3. "Raw Deal" (2:59) Amazing slowed-down section beginning at the 2:00 mark. (9.5/10)

4. "Al Pastor" (3:20) prominent and aggressive acoustic guitar strumming distinguishes this song from the rest. (8/10)

5. "Joshua Tree" (1:37) more syncopated, slowed down acoustic guitars form the spine for this one while multiple synths and heavily-treated guitars cover the weave of leads. (8/10)

6. "PCH" (2:10) almost a total ripoff of CHIC/NILE ROGERS/BERNARD EDWARDS/SISTER SLEDGE song "He's The Greatest Dancer" for the first minute before the searing STEVE HILLAGE-like solo guitar takes over. (8.5/10)

7. "Jogging" (3:01) more IBIZA beach-jazz-funk; more disco-like rhythm guitar over which synths and STEVE HILLAGE- like lead guitar jam. (9/10)

8. "Diamonds" (3:08) essentially a continuation of the previous song's rhythm tracks with new/different lead instrument sounds and melodies. Great bass play! (9.5/10)

9. "Los Angeles" (3:31) more of a 70s Black sexploitation soundtrack song on this one, though more laid back. Heavily flanged synth in left channel and fuzzed guitar in right tandem solo. Lead guitar switches through three different sounds, the last of which sounds like Mike OLDFIELD. More great bass play and R&B rhythm guitar. (8.5/10)

10. "Pursuit" (1:55) a hard drivin' funk song with awesome OLDFIELD/HILLAGE-like guitar sound soloing over the top. Synth joins in with chorus, otherwise this one is a showcase for a single solo guitar. (9/10)

11. "Neon Traffic" (3:27) jazzier funk here supports GARY NUMAN-like solo synth sound before guitar enters to take the lead. More HILLAGE reminders here. Nice spacey synth solo at the end of the second minute. (8.5/10)

12. "El Nino" (2:20) like a revisitation to STEVE HILLAGE's "Palm Trees" (without the lyrics). (9.5/10)

13. "Criminal Weekend" (2:34) Another gorgeous song that feels as if it were inspired by STEVE HILLAGE's album Green--and specifically the song "Palm Trees." (10/10)

14. "Sunsets" (3:11) a great, melodic song that sounds as if it should have been a theme song to some 1970's television show. Very catchy bass and synth lines with the ear-candy melody being delivered by the guitars (lead and rhythm). Awesome end to an awesome album. (9/10)

5 stars; a masterpiece and ground-blazing contribution of upbeat, "Canterbury Funk." Happy music! Makes me think of what might have happened had Steve Hillage or Mike Oldfield gone West Coast jazz-funk. Great stuff and HIGHLY recommended to music lovers everywhere.

BrufordFreak | 5/5 |

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