23 May 2021 - Pat O'
experimental/avant-rock/stoner-rock | http://www.falling-elevators.com/ | Release date: 07 May 2021
Berlin based GLEN’s latest album PULL! is a psychedelic and hypnotic instrumental jam, full of driving rhythms and seafaring hooks.
Berlin’s experimental art-rockers GLEN have released their second album and it’s a beauty. Following on from 2017’s album CRACK, the band have maintained their unique sound and their talent for mixing styles and soundscapes. They have created a psychedelic and deeply addictive album for us all to admire. The concept of the album falls loosely around the seas of old. A time when man and whale waged war. It’s a wandering “avant-rock” trip with improvisation and freedom at the bow.
The opener, “Lecture” begins with a very chilled and almost horizontal vibe, blasé and carefree, with deep psychedelic tones and an air of summer. Breezy and groovy guitars weave and dance with some loose freestyle drumming, while a serving of some acid soaked chords crank things up a notch and add to the multi dimensional layers already on offer. Some stoner hooks and a wicked bass line gives the whole thing a sense of freedom and has you wishing you were driving the open road with the roof down under the warm desert sun, watching the parched landscape roll past either side of you. This style of music gives you that feeling of escape, positivity and that devil-may-care attitude. The guitar tones here are a little dirty and gritty and have that bluesy, nostalgic flair, almost bringing you back to the time of Hendrix and Gallagher, a time when everything was fresh, raw and natural. This track could easily become a soundtrack to the summer for me.
The second track on the album “Korinth”, starts with some tribal bongo drums and a solitary guitar slowly and effortlessly beginning its ascent. The riffs are slow, patient and casual. Patterns shift and sway until it almost becomes an improvised jamming session where everyone is on the same telepathic wavelength, with and a nod and a wink to decide which direction the music flows. There’s also an eastern feel to this track too, with those finely plucked strings and some rat-a-tat-tat percussions. An air of mystery and suspense hangs about the place as the repetitive structure of the track has you waiting for something to take effect. A howling guitar takes centre stage as the music picks up tempo and continues to build and finally plateau with every instrument in full flow, finishing off another brilliant track.
“Ahab” is a track named after the fictional character Captain Ahab who spent his days searching for the white whale, the legendary Moby Dick. While mentioning that it’s also worth highlighting the incredible artwork and illustrations of Michael Bulgrin and the job it does in further enhancing the concept of the album. This track kicks off with a moody bass, and some slow patient drums, before the track quickly changes gears from first to fourth and brings in a guitar-heavy groove, with some faint piano key-hopping. The music swirls around in your head and before you know it the hypnotic and trance inducing melody has you under its spell. Synths wash over it all while the guitars continue to drive forward with purpose and attitude. This is a psychedelic, foot tapping wall of gorgeousness. That feel-good high continues into the final track “Davos”, blending up styles and textures and creating a dreamy tie-dye and hippie inspired flourish. There’s simply no way you can walk away from this album and not have a spring in your step.
GLEN have crafted an album that took inspiration from traditional rock aesthetics, some driving rhythms and gave it a splash of nostalgia and seventies flair. Soothing and hypnotic hooks mixed with some desert soul makes this an addictive and empowering record, and one that will accompany you on every journey you take.