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MOTORPSYCHO

Eclectic Prog • Norway


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Motorpsycho biography
Founded in Trondheim, Norway, in 1989

MOTORPSYCHO was formed initially of Bent SÆTHER (bass), Hans Magnus "Snah" RYAN (guitars) and Kjell Runar "Killer" JENSSEN (drums). The demo EP "Maiden Voyage" from 1990 was their first release, followed by the full length production "Lobotomizer" in 1991. On these first two ventures their stylistic expression were heavily influenced by punk and grunge, the latter a style of music highly popular at the time.

Shortly after the release of their first album drummer JENSSEN left the band, and was replaced by Håkon GEBHARDT (drums, vocals, banjo). This second edition of the band would prove to be pretty stable, as this threesome would make up the core unit of the band for the next 14 years.

The first efforts of the new line-up were the single "3 Songs for Rut", followed by the EP "Soothe". Both of these productions were issued in limited editions in 1992, and was assembled and released as the compilation album "8 Soothings Songs for Rut" later the same year. While still pursuing a tyle of music most closely related to alternative metal on these efforts, influences from progressive rock started manifesting themselves at this point, first and foremost in the close to 10 minutes long effort "Lighthouse Girl".

And influences from progressive rock, psychedelic music and indie rock would all become steadily more prevalent in the musical exploits of MOTORPSYCHO in the coming years, a steadily evolving process that can be traced in a flurry of releases throughout the 90's. Many feel they emerged as a purebred progressive outfit already in 1993, when they released the double album "Demon Box". A single CD version of this effort was released as well, and the tracks omitted from this version due due time constraints was soon after made available on "Mountain EP".

One reason for the evolvement in stylistic expressions on this particular album was the addition of Helge STEN (keyboards, theremin) to their ranks. He would remain a permanent member of MOTORPSYCHO until 1995, and something of a cross between an associated member and frquently used guest musician and contributor for the following years. STEN might be more well know to music fans by his creative moniker DEATHPROD, and he has a score of releases to his own name exploring dark ambient, droning sonic landscapes.

In 1994 MOTORPSYCHO was signed by major label EMI Records for their Norwegian releases, while the band set up their own label ...
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TowerTower
Imports 2017
$19.21
$23.76 (used)
Here Be MonstersHere Be Monsters
Rune Grammofon 2016
$103.99 (used)
It's a Love CultIt's a Love Cult
Stickman 2003
$9.49
$7.42 (used)
PhanerothymePhanerothyme
Stickman 2003
$16.81
$11.72 (used)
Let Them Eat CakeLet Them Eat Cake
Stickman 2003
$11.08
$10.08 (used)
BarracudaBarracuda
Stickman 2001
$15.67
$28.43 (used)
Behind the SunBehind the Sun
Rune Grammofon 2014
$13.06
$15.48 (used)
Trust UsTrust Us
Stickman 2003
$21.44
$19.68 (used)
Little Lucid MomentsLittle Lucid Moments
Stickman 2008
$12.50
$8.98 (used)
Right Now on Ebay (logo)
Behind The Sun [VINYL - BRAND NEW] by Motorpsycho USD $35.95 Buy It Now
Still Life With Eggplant [VINYL - BRAND NEW] by Motorpsycho USD $23.61 Buy It Now
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MOTORPSYCHO > original gatefold Vinyl LP < Lobotomizer (1991) USD $525.00 Buy It Now 10 days
MOTORPSYCHO >>> original 2x Vinyl LP <<< Blissard (1996) USD $79.99 Buy It Now 10 days
MOTORPSYCHO >>> original Vinyl 2LP <<< Demon Box (1993) USD $349.99 Buy It Now 10 days
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MOTORPSYCHO >>> original Vinyl 2LP <<< Trust Us (1998) USD $69.99 Buy It Now 10 days
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MOTORPSYCHO discography


Ordered by release date | Showing ratings (top albums) | Help Progarchives.com to complete the discography and add albums

MOTORPSYCHO top albums (CD, LP, MC, SACD, DVD-A, Digital Media Download)

3.01 | 38 ratings
Lobotomizer
1991
3.76 | 55 ratings
Demon Box
1993
3.84 | 78 ratings
Timothy's Monster
1994
3.25 | 19 ratings
The Tussler
1994
3.13 | 45 ratings
Blissard
1996
3.49 | 55 ratings
Angels And Daemons At Play
1997
4.07 | 88 ratings
Trust Us
1998
3.90 | 65 ratings
Let Them Eat Cake
2000
4.13 | 103 ratings
Phanerothyme
2001
3.84 | 49 ratings
It's A Love Cult
2002
4.16 | 72 ratings
Motorpsycho & Jaga Jazzist Horns: In The Fishtank
2002
3.86 | 19 ratings
Motorpsycho Presents The International Tussler Society
2004
3.75 | 61 ratings
Black Hole / Blank Canvas
2006
3.89 | 98 ratings
Little Lucid Moments
2008
3.45 | 46 ratings
Child Of The Future
2009
3.77 | 203 ratings
Heavy Metal Fruit
2010
4.16 | 437 ratings
Motorpsycho & Ståle Storløkken: The Death Defying Unicorn
2012
3.94 | 171 ratings
Still Life With Eggplant
2013
3.97 | 294 ratings
Behind The Sun
2014
3.84 | 110 ratings
Here Be Monsters
2016
3.29 | 7 ratings
Begynnelser
2017
4.03 | 150 ratings
The Tower
2017

MOTORPSYCHO Live Albums (CD, LP, MC, SACD, DVD-A, Digital Media Download)

4.38 | 8 ratings
Roadwork Vol. 1 - Heavy Metall Iz A Poze, Hardt Rock Iz A Laifschteil - Live In Europe 1998
1999
4.33 | 3 ratings
Roadwork Vol. 2 - The MotorSourceMassacre - Motorpsycho, The Source & Deathprod Live At Kongsberg Jazzfestival 1995
2000
4.15 | 11 ratings
Roadwork Vol. 4 - Intrepid Skronk
2011
3.60 | 5 ratings
Strings Of Stroop - Live At Effenaar
2011
4.50 | 10 ratings
Motorpsycho and Ståle Storløkken: En Konsert For Folk Flest
2015

MOTORPSYCHO Videos (DVD, Blu-ray, VHS etc)

5.00 | 2 ratings
This Is Motorpsycho
1995
5.00 | 1 ratings
Hair Cuts - Motorpsycho On Film
2008

MOTORPSYCHO Boxset & Compilations (CD, LP, MC, SACD, DVD-A, Digital Media Download)

3.15 | 9 ratings
8 Soothing Songs For Rut
1992
0.00 | 0 ratings
Angels And Daemons At Play
1997
4.00 | 2 ratings
Timothy's Monster - Deluxe Edition
2010
4.00 | 1 ratings
Blissard - Deluxe Edition
2012
4.00 | 2 ratings
Demon Box - Deluxe Edition
2014
4.75 | 4 ratings
Supersonic Scientists - A Young Person's Guide To Motorpsycho
2015
3.00 | 1 ratings
Angels And Daemons At Play - Deluxe Edition
2016

MOTORPSYCHO Official Singles, EPs, Fan Club & Promo (CD, EP/LP, MC, Digital Media Download)

2.05 | 2 ratings
Maiden Voyage
1990
3.00 | 2 ratings
Soothe
1992
3.00 | 2 ratings
3 Songs For Rut
1992
0.00 | 0 ratings
Motorpsycho
1992
0.00 | 0 ratings
Motorpsycho / Hedge Hog: Into The Sun / Surprise
1993
4.17 | 6 ratings
Mountain EP
1993
4.00 | 5 ratings
Another Ugly EP
1994
0.00 | 0 ratings
Leave It Like That
1994
4.00 | 1 ratings
Wearing Yr Smell
1994
3.80 | 5 ratings
The Nerve Tattoo
1995
4.00 | 2 ratings
Manmower
1996
0.00 | 0 ratings
Motorpsycho / Alice Cooper: Mad Sun / Nobody Likes Me
1996
0.00 | 0 ratings
Motorpsycho & Tre Små Kinesere: Mot Riving
1997
0.00 | 0 ratings
Baby Scooter
1997
4.00 | 1 ratings
Have Spacesuit Will Travel
1997
0.00 | 0 ratings
Lovelight
1997
0.00 | 0 ratings
Sinful, Wind-Borne
1997
4.00 | 4 ratings
Starmelt EP
1997
4.50 | 2 ratings
Ozone
1998
3.67 | 3 ratings
Hey, Jane
1998
4.00 | 2 ratings
The Other Fool EP
2000
3.33 | 3 ratings
Walkin' With J EP
2000
3.20 | 6 ratings
Barracuda
2001
0.00 | 0 ratings
The Slow Phaseout
2001
0.00 | 0 ratings
Go To California
2001
0.00 | 0 ratings
Motorpsycho / The Soundtrack Of Our Lives: Go To California / Black To Comm / Broken Imaginary Time / Galaxy Gramophone
2002
0.00 | 0 ratings
Serpentine
2002
3.50 | 6 ratings
Serpentine EP
2002
0.00 | 0 ratings
Motor Home: Country Chris / Life Is A Little Lie
2003
0.00 | 0 ratings
Motorpsycho Presents The International Tussler Society - Satan's Favourite Son
2004
0.00 | 0 ratings
Motorpsycho Presents The International Tussler Society - Laila Lou
2004
0.00 | 0 ratings
Hyena / Bonny Lee
2006
0.00 | 0 ratings
X-3 (Knuckleheads In Space)
2010
0.00 | 0 ratings
The Visitant
2010
0.00 | 0 ratings
Motorpsycho / Sugarfoot: Stay Young / These Are Days
2014
2.00 | 1 ratings
The Ninth Fragment - Toys
2014
2.92 | 3 ratings
The Motorpnakotic Manuscripts
2014
0.00 | 0 ratings
Psychonaut / Toys
2015
0.00 | 0 ratings
Spin, Spin, Spin
2016
4.67 | 3 ratings
Here Be Monsters Vol. 2
2016
0.00 | 0 ratings
The California EP
2017

MOTORPSYCHO Reviews


Showing last 10 reviews only
 Lobotomizer by MOTORPSYCHO album cover Studio Album, 1991
3.01 | 38 ratings

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Lobotomizer
Motorpsycho Eclectic Prog

Review by siLLy puPPy
Collaborator PSIKE, JR/F/Canterbury & Eclectic Teams

3 stars MOTORPSYCHO is one of Norway's most prolific and diverse sounding bands having racked up much critical acclaim for their ambitious stream of never-ending albums that feature genre-blending stylistic approaches and are most recognized in the world of progressive rock. However in the beginning when the band was founded by vocalist / bassist Bent Saether, guitarist / vocalist Hans Magnus Ryan and original drummer Kjell Runar Jensaen, the band was firmly grounded in the alternative heavy metal and grunge that was taking over the world in the early 90s. After a couple of warm-up demos, MOTORPSYCHO made their debut in 1991 with LOBOTOMIZER which found the band at their rawest, least progressive and as the cover suggests rooted in a stoner-tinged psychedelia or more appropriately called stoner metal.

LOBOTOMIZER fits somewhere in the murky area between hard rock, grunge and alternative metal. Most resembling Soundgarden in their earliest years with heavily distorted down-tuned guitar riffing, chunky bass and that now famous grungy drum along stylistic percussive drive, MOTORPSYCHO also exhibit a heavy speedy drive that keeps the music churning along with only a couple tracks like "Wasted" and "Eternity" slowing things down a few notches. While the heavy rock still retains a rather bluesy compositional approach not dissimilar to Alice In Chains, Melvins or Monster Magnet, the band was already a little more sophisticated than the average grunge band even at the very beginning with more dynamic compositional approaches that were displaying progressive tendencies albeit unfulfilled.

While most of LOBOTIMIZER is on hard rock overdrive, "Eternity" stands out as one of their most psychedelic offerings with lush acoustic guitar strumming, electronic swirling effects reminding me a bit of Hawkwind and more tripped out electric guitar antics. "Hogwash," one of their crowd favorites in live performances extends over eight minutes and provides a cool psychedelic jam that utilizes a heavily distorted guitar groove and Geir Nilsen's guest appearance on Hammond organ bringing a veritable 60s vibe to the table. The best and most accomplished track is reserved as the the closer with the near twelve minute "TFC" which takes both aspects of heavy grungy rock and psychedelia and churns out a lengthy mind bending trip into the alternative promised land with all kinds of Krautrock-ish freakouts thus flaunting their freak flag creds.

While LOBOTOMIZER is heavily steeped in the early 90s regalia of grunge and alternative metal, it's clear in retrospect albeit probably not at the time that MOTORPSYCHO was more sophisticated than the average grunge band on the block. Snuck into the mix was the use of violins and other sound affects to augment the trippiness effect and the interesting mixes themselves evoked an extreme sense of thoughtfulness absent from the major players of the day. While MOTORPSYCHO would score big in their native Norway all throughout their alternative 90s years, success would escape their clutches on a global scale. Although LOBOTOMIZER is often ranked as the band's weakest effort, i find this to be a truly satisfying slice of early 90s alternative metal / grunge that offers a lot more sophistication than the average Nirvana album for sure. Will Saether's vocal antics evoke the 90s, Ryan's guitar feedback and fuzz just as easily bring the 60s to the forefront. Perhaps not their best but not one to be skipped either.

3.5 but rounded down

 The Tower by MOTORPSYCHO album cover Studio Album, 2017
4.03 | 150 ratings

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The Tower
Motorpsycho Eclectic Prog

Review by chelloveck

5 stars When drummer Kenneth Kapstad jumped ship in May 2016, after a brilliant nine year tenure, which revitalized the duo of Bent Sæther and Hans Magnus 'Snah' Ryan, there were doubts as to whom would be able to replace him in the drumstool. After spending the remains of '16 writing and performing music for the play «Begynnelser» («Beginnings»), the band announced in January '17 that they had found the replacement; swedish drummer Tomas Järmyr, student at the conservatory in Trondheim, and a member of such bands as YODOK and ZU. After just a few months together they travelled to California in March and recorded the material which would end up on «The Tower». The more hard-hitting material was recorded at White Buffalo in L.A., while the more pastoral was recorded at Rancho de la Luna in Joshua Tree. Well, enough background. What about the music?

The first thing long time fans would notice is that the songs are more heavy than they have been for quite some time. It seems that the introduction of a new drummer has given the two old-timers an injection of energy, at least if one is to compare this album with Kapstad's last album with the group; «Here be Monsters». In a way, it is comparable to the revitalization Kapstad gave the group, which was shown on «Little Lucid Moments». The first three songs all share this heaviness, although they are quite different. The opening title track is the most proggy of the three, with a healthy dose of mellotron, a great "symphonic" main riff, and a long, multi-part instrumental section in the middle. Great opening. The symphonic tendensies continue on the next track, "Bartok of the Universe", although this a bit more heavier, and conventional in structure. The verses are a great example of the band's ability to create lovely, melodic vocal parts against an aggressive backdrop. A top three track for me. The third track, "A.S.F.E.", meaning 'A Song for Everyone' harkens back to their 90's period, with just a droning riff repeating for seven minutes, with a few variations thrown in. Think Sabbath-meets-krautrock. An okay- ish song, although it does not live up to the standard of the first two tracks.

After the explosiveness of these opening three tracks, there is time for a little psychedelic excursion, which comes in the form of "Intrepid Explorer". The first few minutes are devoted to a mellow and charming vocal part, before we head into space with a seemingly endless buildup, which in my opinion no band does better. Certainly an acquired taste, but for me this js a certain winner. In order to catch one's breath, we are then given the acoustic track "Stardust", laden with CSNY-style vocal harmonies and a touch of mellotron. A pleasant and necessary change of dynamics. It's back to the heavy style with the sixth track, "In Every Dream Home". A great classic rock-vibe sets the tone, including an absolutely facemelting guitar solo from Snah. In the middle there is a change of pace, when Alain Johannes comes in with a flute-part akin back to 70's style prog. A great, and varied track. The vibe from "Stardust" is reintroduced in the next track; "The Maypole", although with a bit more energy here. A very uplifting and pleasant track.

The third to last track, "A Pacific Sonata", is the longest on the album, clocking in at almost 16 minutes. The first eight minutes are devoted to a beatiful CSNY-style ballad, including a heavenly guitar solo from Snah, when this part is done and dusted, Sæther starts to play a quite hasty bass riff, which leads the way for further psychedelic exploration for the remaining minutes, before the opening vocal part is repeated at the end. Probably my favorite track on the album. The penultimate track is the heaviest on the album. "The Cuckoo" starts with an atmospheric mellotron intro, which soon erupts into a doom metal-ish riff. Again, the influence of Sabbath is quite evident. Apart from a short and mellow bridge, this is pretty hardhitting for all of its seven minutes. A good track, but not enough to reach the pantheon. The last track, though, is worthy of consideration. "Ship of Fools" clocks in at around 15 minutes and start of with a repeating piano motif, which goes on for quite a bit, until it enfolds into a proper prog epic. The first five minutes are majestic and uplifting, with great vocal parts, before turning to introspection and a more darker vibe for the remaining minutes. Great, great track.

I will never fathom how these guys are able to churn out quality music at the rate which they are doing. After just three months with a new drummer, they are able to produce a double album with 80 minutes of music, and 95 % of it works perfectly. A real tour-de-force album. I have not mentioned the playing of Järmyr yet, but as you surely would have understood, he fits into the mold perfectly. He is not as 'wild' as Kapstad, but they both have the jazzy touch and knack for improvisation, which is so important for thia band. So to sum up: check out this album. A package full of diversity and fun.

 Trust Us by MOTORPSYCHO album cover Studio Album, 1998
4.07 | 88 ratings

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Trust Us
Motorpsycho Eclectic Prog

Review by aglasshouse

4 stars Motorpsycho is a Norwegian rock band that surfaced around the late eighties. The band named themselves after the 1965 Russ Meyer exploitation film of the same name. The movie follows a veterinarian named Alex Rocco whose wife is raped by a motorcycle gang, and his subsequent revenge plot. This namesake doesn't have the most interesting history, as the biggest reason Motorpsycho picked it was due to all of Meyers' other acclaimed movies having bands forming under their monikers, and "Motorpsycho" was the only one left not taken. However this origin does give a bit of basis into the band's early history. The band started as a stoner/alternative metal band, releasing their debut Lobotomizer in 1991. To call the album special was perhaps an overstatement; it was grungy and rough but also had glimpses of deeper complexity. Aside from the quality, what Lobotomizer marked most importantly was a signal for more to come. As the band progressed through the 90's they almost entirely lost their metal edge, opting for a more and more progressive, hard-rock, Led Zeppelin-esque output. This, in a way, is what made Motorpsycho's albums so unique in their own rights; every single one was like a different era in themselves, unheeded by any superficial tie-downs to any one genre. This is what truly made Motorpsycho an eclectic band.

Now we could take a look at really any one of the band's albums and have an enjoyable experience, but I decided to pick my personal favorite of the bunch. This album was none other than Trust Us, released in March of 1998.

Trust Us is perhaps the most complex of Motorpsycho's 90's material, which is saying something for a band such as this. Usually when it comes to albums released in '98 or '99, I make a point of how the band's sound was changing to fit a new decade, or that they began to synthesize new techniques of that time period. Motorpsycho is unique as Trust Us was not an absolute guarantee in a change of style. It sort of continues where Angels and Daemons At Play left off, albeit with less "indie" attached to it's name. Trust Us takes in a lot of influences, like Pink Floyd and the aforementioned Led Zeppelin. Hans Ryan and Bent Saether's overly-crunching riffs coincide staggeringly with the quieter background music and the overly-intricate drumming of Haakon Gebhardt, but with a few spins it becomes much more cognitively natural as your brain adapts to it. That brings up a bit of a nitpick some might have about Trust Us- pertaining to it's inaccessibility. Many of the tracks are 7+ minutes long and I can see how that could turn casual listeners or those with "musical A.D.D." off. I for one suffer from the latter, yet I'm easily enthralled by the sheer nail-biting talent showcased in some of these songs. '577' is undoubtedly my favorite, starting with the soft croon of Ryan and Saether's harmonizing vocals and leading directly into 4 minutes of unique and complex guitar solos, until finally re-arriving at the vocals. For me it's a true flagship of the bands talent with instrumentation (which undeniably is where they shine the most). However on the less heavy side, 'Ozone' is a bluesy kicker with a dash of White Stripes and a disarmingly fun beat. On the prog side 'The Ocean In Her Eye' fits the bill, an almost post-rock infusion undercutting an over nine minute long exercise of the band's creative muscle. Other tracks hold their own water very well but this praise isn't meant to be dealt by me, at least I don't believe so. Trust Us is a whopping 81 minutes and is nothing short of an experience that should be held at a personal angle rather than given away. I mean that in the most positive way that I can.

Motorpsycho is a unique band and revolutionary in their field. Although I wouldn't necessarily recommend that a first-timer start at Trust Us, I would conversely recommend that anyone looking for a powerful experience whilst stuck in a musical drought, then this album is definitely for you. Good luck.

4.5/5 rounded to a 4/5.

 Here Be Monsters by MOTORPSYCHO album cover Studio Album, 2016
3.84 | 110 ratings

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Here Be Monsters
Motorpsycho Eclectic Prog

Review by Mellotron Storm
Prog Reviewer

4 stars Norway's MOTORPSYCHO have been at it for over 25 years and have released a ton of music over that period. They also have changed the style of music they make many times over those years, but the last three studio albums have been similar with that strong Psyche/ Rock flavour and man have they made a fan of me in doing so. It was actually that ambitious concept album "The Death Defying Unicorn" that won me over back in 2012. Lets put it this way, "The Death Defying Unicorn", Still Life With Eggplant" and "Behind The Sun" all ended up in my top five for those three years. "Here Be Monsters" while still the same style as the previous two has more of a Psych vibe and less of a "Rock" one, in other words it's more laid back overall by a significant amount and it will probably be well out of my top ten this year even though it's still a very enjoyable album.

There seems to be a theme with this album and it's about people's fears, or the perceived monsters they have to deal with. It seems to deal with children rather than adults for the most part. "Sleepwalking" is around a minute of piano melodies. "Lacuna/ Sunrise" is a song about a person who is losing their mind and it's divided into two parts. It's slow paced with acoustic guitar before it turns fuller with a beat and bass. It picks up a notch before 1 1/2 minutes then reserved vocals join in after 2 minutes in a hazy soundscape. We get a prolonged instrumental break from after 4 1/2 minutes to after 8 minutes and I really like the guitar late in this section. Vocals are back after 8 minutes. "Running With Scissors" is one of my favs and an instrumental. I just really like that repetitive guitar melody and also when it veers off into different directions. Another hazy sounding tune and check out the relaxed guitar after 3 1/2 minutes. I love the mood here plus we get some flute.

"I.M.S." stands for "Inner Mounting Shame" apparently. Piano to start as a second piano joins in but off-set. Some power a minute in as the electric guitar starts to light it up as the drums and the bass build. Vocals before 2 1/2 minutes as they let it rip instrumentally. Love the guitar here. It settles right down then kicks in hard after 5 1/2 minutes right to the end. Great track! "Spin, Spin, Spin" is a H.P. LOVECRAFT cover. Not one of my favs but it's pretty good. Strummed guitar and electric guitar as the vocals come in singing "Spin, spin, spin my little darling". A beat with bass joins in then we get a nice instrumental section after 3 minutes to the end.

"Sleepwalking Again" is more of those piano melodies. "Big Black Dog" is the epic here and my favourite at almost 18 minutes in length. Picked acoustic guitar to start as soft vocals join in. Eventually some backing vocals and atmosphere arrive. A change after 4 minutes as it turns heavier then the vocals return but with more passion this time. We get some mellotron around 8 minutes. It's even more intense 9 1/2 minutes in but then we get a sudden calm before 11 1/2 minutes as intricate guitar takes over. Keys join in then more mellotron as it starts to slowly build until that familiar melody returns after 14 1/2 minutes. Another calm before 16 minutes as we get the intro reprised then those soft vocals return as it stays mellow to the end.

This just doesn't click with me like "Still Life With Eggplant" or "Behind The Sun" but this is a very solid album, I just feel it has moments that I'm not sold on.

 Angels And Daemons At Play by MOTORPSYCHO album cover Studio Album, 1997
3.49 | 55 ratings

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Angels And Daemons At Play
Motorpsycho Eclectic Prog

Review by UMUR
Special Collaborator Honorary Collaborator

3 stars "Angels and Daemons at Play" is the 5th full-length studio album by Norwegian hard rock/psychadelic rock act Motorpsycho. The album was released through Stickman Records (Europe) in January 1997 and through Sony Music (Norway) in February 1997. As it´s costum with most Motorpsycho releases the tracklists for the CD and vinyl versions of the album are different. In this case the vinyl version features 3 bonus tracks not included on the CD version and the track order is also slightly different on the two versions.

Stylistically "Angels and Daemons at Play" more or less continues the alternative/hard rock/psychadelic rock style of "Blissard (1996)", but maybe with a slightly more organic tone to the proceedings. If you are familiar with later releases by the band, the more organic sound isn´t a surprise though. The musicianship are on a high level although the vocals as usual are the weak link. They are rather thin and tend to sound strained. The vocal melodies aren´t always that great either and of course that doesn´t help a vocalist that already sounds a bit uncomfortable. It´s not all bad though and there are definitely moments on the album where the vocals suit the music fine.

It is however the instrumental part of the music that is the most interesting part of the album. The influences from 60s/70s hard/psychadelic rock work really well for Motorpsycho and it´s mostly when they turn alternative that my attention wanders. When they play longer jam packed instrumental sections, like they do on the hard edged "Heartattack Mac" and the more atmospheric "Un Chien d'espace", that´s when they really shine. Most tracks on the album (actually all tracks besides the two before mentioned tracks, which are both longer tracks) are not that long and therefore don´t have enough minutes to spend on extented instrumental sections, but they are still well written, well produced and well played compositions.

Soundwise and stylistically "Angels and Daemons at Play" is the natural successor to "Blissard (1996)" and while it isn´t a major step up from it´s predecessor, it´s certainly on par in quality and a 3.5 star (70%) rating is deserved.

 Phanerothyme by MOTORPSYCHO album cover Studio Album, 2001
4.13 | 103 ratings

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Phanerothyme
Motorpsycho Eclectic Prog

Review by javajeff

5 stars Motorpsycho has a huge catalog of albums with a bigger variety of styles and genres they seem to cover. I started with their newer albums, and have been working my way backwards enjoying the journey. What I can say about Phanerothyme is that it should not be missed. Amazing songs like For Free, Go to California, Painting the Night Unreal, The Slow Phaseout, and When You're Dead could make it Motorpsycho's best album for some people. Motorpsycho and Ståle Storløkken: The Death Defying Unicorn for me is their best album, but I think Phanerothyme is easily their best indie rock output to date. Phanerothyme is less proggy than the newer stuff, but it has excellent songwriting and performances. The musicianship is stellar, and it has a magic to it that is also present in The Death Defying Unicorn. There is a warmth and charm to their early stuff, and Phanerothyme has it in spades. If you like the band in the least bit, and can appreciate different genres of music, this is a must own album. I highly recommend it to rock lovers with an eclectic side that can appreciate top notch songwriting.
 Blissard by MOTORPSYCHO album cover Studio Album, 1996
3.13 | 45 ratings

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Blissard
Motorpsycho Eclectic Prog

Review by UMUR
Special Collaborator Honorary Collaborator

3 stars "Blissard" is the 4th full-length studio album by Norwegian hard rock/psychadelic rock act Motorpsycho. The album was released through Stickman Records in February 1996. To bridge the gap between "Timothy's Monster (1994)" and "Blissard", the members of Motorpsycho enganged in the Motorpsycho & Friends project (sometimes refered to as The International Tussler Society) titled "The Tussler ? Original Motion Picture Soundtrack (1994)". It´s a country rock styled soundtrack to a fictional Spaghetti Western originally released on CD in a very limited amount of copies.

With "Blissard" the band return to more familiar hard rock/psychadelic rock ground though. However it seems the "Tussler" experience has provided Motorpsycho with some fresh ideas and a new approach to writing music, because to my ears there is a big difference in compositional quality if you compare "Timothy's Monster (1994)" and "Blissard". Stylistically the music continues down the same alternative rock path with nods toward psychadelic rock (mostly in the middle section of "Sonic Teenage Guinevere") and hard rock as on "Timothy's Monster (1994)", but the tracks are generally more memorable and intriguing than the case was on the more mediocre predecessor. There is good dynamics on the album and there are both hard rocking tracks and more mellow songs on the tracklist. The music is guitar, bass, drums and vocal driven, but there are occasional use of various keyboards/organs on the album too. Bent Saether´s voice is a bit thin/fragile and he sounds strained at times, but somehow he pulls it off anyway. The vocals are a slight issue though and thankfully something that would get better with each subsequent release.

"Blissard" features the most well sounding production on any Motorpsycho release up until then. The fact that they´ve opted for a slightly more organic sound on this album is definitely one of the main reasons. It´s nice to hear that Motorpsycho already this early on in their career start to embrace a more warm and organic 70s influenced sound and slowly begin to move away from the more abrassive alternative rock sound of their formative years. That transition has been obvious in glimpses on the previous releases, but it´s here on "Blissard" that it´s become an integrated part of the sound.

So all in all "Blissard" is a step up from previous releases by the band, and it´s a pretty enjoyable listen in it´s own right too. It´s not a perfect album by any means and there are still some issues with for instance the quality of the vocal performance, but it´s still obvious that "Blissard" is a quality release featuring many intriguing ideas, tight playing, and a powerful and suiting sound production. A 3.5 star (70%) rating is deserved.

 Timothy's Monster by MOTORPSYCHO album cover Studio Album, 1994
3.84 | 78 ratings

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Timothy's Monster
Motorpsycho Eclectic Prog

Review by UMUR
Special Collaborator Honorary Collaborator

3 stars "Timothy's Monster" is the 3rd full-length studio album by Norwegian hard/psychadelic rock act Motorpsycho. The album was released through Stickman Records (Europe)/Harvest/EMI (Norway) in August 1994. "Timothy's Monster" is a double album release, featuring 15 tracks and a full playing time of 1 hour and 49:06 minutes.

So there is arguably a lot of quantity for the money. Stylistically Motorpsycho continue their musical journey from alternative rock/metal act to alternative/psychadelic rock act with occasional harder edged rock leanings. Most of the 11 tracks on disc 1 are alternative in nature and for the most part vers/chorus structured. They are not particularly memorable, but not bad either. It´s the longer tracks and especially the 16:57 minutes long "The Wheel" from disc 2, that are most interesting. That´s also the tracks where the group´s psychadelic side is heard the most.

"Timothy's Monster" features a decent sound production, but it could have prospered from a more warm and organic tone. So while "Timothy's Monster" is as such an alright listen, there are also things that frustrate me a bit about it. Motorpsycho simply don´t seem to know what they want on this album and as a consequence it´s stylistically inconsistent. That might suit some listeners, but for such a long album to run in so many different directions it ends up being a slightly confusing listen. The heavy fuzzy bass tone is another odd feature on the album. It´s as such great with a heavy distorted bass, but it´s sometimes placed in some sections where it doesn´t seem to belong. Bent Saether´s strained vocal delivery and unmemorable vocal lines don´t exactly make things better.

As mentioned there are some pretty great material on "Timothy's Monster" too though, and those tracks actually do make up for some of the odd choices the band have made on the album. I can mention "The Wheel" enough as the highlight of the album with it´s hypnotic, heavy, and repetitive beat and psychadelic vocals and effects, but "The Golden Core" and "Giftland" (which are the other two long tracks on the album) are also standout tracks to my ears. "Grindstone" is another track that´s a bit different from the rest of the material on the album as it´s a pretty noisy and almost metal type track. It´s not a particularly great track though and features some pretty annoying noisy closing couple of minutes.

While neither "Lobotomizer (1991)" nor "Demon Box (1993)" exactly made my blood boil, at least both of them had some really good tracks and some decent filler. On "Timothy's Monster" the great tracks are few and the amount of filler too high. I think I´m stretching with a 3 star (60%) rating.

 Behind The Sun by MOTORPSYCHO album cover Studio Album, 2014
3.97 | 294 ratings

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Behind The Sun
Motorpsycho Eclectic Prog

Review by Warthur
Prog Reviewer

3 stars Motorpsycho are a diverse band who love to try out all sorts of different sounds, which has made for a long and prolific career but can also mean that each new album has to win its over on its own terms. I'd loved their avant- proggy Death-Defying Unicorn, but this time around on Behind the Sun they aren't really going there, instead turning out a style of neo-psychedelic rock which puts me in mind of the more lukewarm and tepid efforts of Mercury Rev - and leaves me just as cold as Mercury Rev's less spellbinding works do. It's fun, it's competent, but it doesn't really speak to me.
 Here Be Monsters by MOTORPSYCHO album cover Studio Album, 2016
3.84 | 110 ratings

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Here Be Monsters
Motorpsycho Eclectic Prog

Review by Progrussia

3 stars I guess only Buckethead beats Motorpsycho in output. Nominally there was an unusual for them two-year break between their last and the latest, but that time was filled with original material live albums and fan memorabilia. Over the years, Motorpsycho has done all the styles conceivable, from grunge to symphonic pop and country, but mostly has been stuck in retro heavy rock mode for the last decade or so. Well, Here Be Monsters is a laid-back, melancholic side of Motorpsycho, with ample vintage synth backing and just one rocker among the five proper tracks - I.M.S., a common kind of song for them, a psychedelic rocker with ringing lead guitar lines and a monster groove. Lacuna/Sunrise and instrumental Running with Scissors are soft-jazzy and folky (the first one reminded me of a similarly styled sad Beardfish numbers of the Comfort Zone album). Big Black Dog is another type of song that Motorpsycho does often, which starts softly and has a long droning break in the middle that serves its purpose to evoke long windy Norwegian winters, but the song to my ears lacks a decent hook or groove.
Thanks to windhawk for the artist addition. and to Quinino for the last updates

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