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Sky Picnic - Farther In This Fairy Tale CD (album) cover


Sky Picnic


Psychedelic/Space Rock

4.00 | 1 ratings

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4 stars This is the first full-length album of US trio Sky Picnic, which was released last year (2011) after a couple of previous EP's and a single, all of them worth listening, by the way. This time they offer ten compositions that make a total time of 50 minutes, in which we will listen to a kind of retro-psych in the vein of Pink Floyd Barrett's era, and some other 60s touches. The album opens with "Hide and Seek" and since the first seconds I am sure you will notice that soft-psych sound I mentioned above, with a cool female voice, great drums and cool guitars.

"White Plane" has a laid-back sound at first, but later it progresses and the intensity increases a little bit. The guitar work during the whole track is pretty good, and I really like the vocals and the effects they use. The chorus is catchy, by the way. "Marker 25, 27" starts delicate with a warm and charming touch, and later just before reaching the first minute it changes, a great mellotron is implemented along with a distorted bass sound, which produce a strong and dark sound. Then the song repeats its structure one more time, and later creates new passages; but this particular part with mellotron is what makes this track greater. This is one of their finest compositions, in my opinion.

A couple of short tracks come later with "Seven", "Abbie's Bike Ride" and "Going Mad in Cambridge" making together ten minutes. The first one is an acoustic guitar based track with some electronic effects and a delicate male voice. Later after two minutes a mellotron enters and produces a new atmosphere, perfectly complemented by the voices. In the second track the music is more dynamic, the rhythm increases and the retro-psych sound is here once again. Worth mentioning that in spite of the reminiscences of those 60-70s inspirational bands, the sound of Sky Picnic is very original, one can easily recognize them. The third song of this bunch has nice bass notes, excellent drums and accurate keyboards that work as background in the right moments. I also like how male and female voices join in some parts.

Next we will have the longest composition entitled "The Universal Mind Decoder" in which they offer eleven minutes of this psychedelic prog, with some moments of jam and some others with a clear structure. The bass notes are great in the whole track, as well as the drums. I like both, the moments with vocals and the pure instrumental ones, a good example of the latter is after three minutes, when it makes a change and a psychedelic trip begins, reminding me a bit of Floyd's Pompeii moments. The jam continues for some minutes and the vocals return in the eighth minute, returning the previous structure. This is a very good song, though not my favorite.

A reprise of "White Plane" comes now with two minutes less but with the same intensity of the distorted bass, mellotron and vocals. "Farther in this Fairy Tale" is the shortest track of the album, and it seems to be an improvisation, a dark atmosphere created here, nothing more. The last track is "Warren", a song with cool drums and vocals, but in my opinion it is only one more track, nothing new or outstanding here.

I really like Sky Picnic's music, this debut album is good and presents a solid example of the kind of music they create. However, for some strange reason I still prefer their Synesthesia EP. Anyway, this is of course worth listening and exploring, and deserves four stars.

Enjoy it!

memowakeman | 4/5 |


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