Wednesday, November 15, 2023

Cassette Review // Jeffrey Alexander + The Heavy Lidders "Spacious Minds" (Arrowhawk Records)

 





When this cassette starts it has those sounds like tuning and light cymbal crashes.   This is usually what musicians play live and I'm not sure if their set is starting or if it's just them getting ready still.   This is why I feel like we need hosts at live shows so we can know when the music officially starts, but I digress because rock n roll is more loose than all of that.  This guitar part comes in which is part rock, part country and really just some trippy Americana and it gets us moving.  

Part rock n roll, part jam band and we are just in it now.   The singing comes in and this one is just smooth.   The guitar just blisters through and this has such a great melody.   It's slowing down a little bit now, but still keeping that groove.   These laser sounds and such come through, making it feel like we're in space and the whole thing is just dissecting now.   Sounds like talking underwater now and tapping on the glass.   Then a series of beeps.   The guitar fades gently into the night.

Just when it feels like the song might be getting ready to fade away, the vocals return and it seems to have a rebirth.   What I like about this side of the cassette is that this is one song that goes on for about a half hour.  Other artists might have said (or thought) about making this into several different songs and having them take up the whole first side, but there also isn't really a good place to stop and be like "Ok, that's the first song".   There is also applause at the end of this, which makes me feel like it was all done in one long take and that's even more amazing.

On the flip side, things start off just as trippy, as we find ourselves caught in a dreamy groove.   This takes us into a song which is very much this dreamy guitar riff-based and it feels like it's being played heavily through the smoke.    As it grows quieter and more ominous, someone can be heard saying "Sunny Days".   Light bells and that way a sax can move are heard now as this feels more distant.

For the first time on this side there is some singing, which starts off like this chanting.  It feels like we're floating in space or just out in the middle of the desert staring up at the stars.   That sound like a sax just blasts through at times.    This song just really feels like it's building, as if it started with one layer and just put other layers on top of it until it becomes what we hear by the end of the song.

This next song starts with this bass-filled riff which ends up getting heavy distortion around it.   This is just rocking and vocals come in singing with it as well.   This song just has this great way of rocking where it can drift off into these instrumental parts which both just feel those guitar solos but also feel these whirrs like we have some aliens coming.   Everything slows down and applause can be heard.  












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