Spirits Burning & Clearlight: The Roadmap In Your Head
Here is another new discovery for me. The band is Spirits Burning with a beginning dating back to the mid '80s. The project was formed and developed by American producer/musician/composer Don Falcone and with thirteen albums to their credit have been very prolific. Through the years they have played with a number of gifted musicians including members of Hawkwind (Nik Turner) and the late Daevid Allen (Gong) among many others. The new release titled The Roadmap In Your Head sees Falcone pairing with Clearlight, otherwise known as French composer/keyboardist Cyrille Verdeaux.
There are a total of thirty-five musicians in all, including the aforementioned Don Falcone, Daevid Allen and Nik Turner as well as Albert Bouchard (BOC), Steve Hillage (System 7, Gong), Kavus Torabi (Gong, Knifeworld, Cardiacs), Theo Travis (David Gilmour, Steven Wilson, Porcupine Tree, Gong) and Dave Sturt (Gong, Jade Warrior, Bill Nelson).
Ambient, psychedelic, jazz and space rock is what you get and as you would expect from such seasoned veterans the musicianship and arrangements are top notch.
The beginning title track features some nice guitar work from Allen as the music transitions between ambient and space rock. Although quite a mellow offering there is much happening in the background so you really need to pay attention to get maximum benefit. "Sun Sculptor & The Electrobilities" is another cool tune with persistent electronic percussion and spacey washes of experimentation with whispered vocals adding to the trippy vibe. "The Birth Of Belief" struck a chord with me right away especially the gorgeous sax from Ian East and a fabulous instrumental build that relies more on subtlety than overblown excess. Electronic percussion, synths and piano add to one of the disc's most sublime moments. "Coffee For Coltrane" is more of the same this time featuring the angular yet melodic guitar work of Kavus Torabi and excellent lead synth courtesy of Verdeaux. Allen supplies vocals and guitar on the mood laden "Roadmaps (The Other Way)", the album's last track. His patented half talking/singing adds to the track's innate mysteriousness and dream-like atmospheres. The flute of Paul Booth deserves special mention. Quite a beautiful track indeed.
The best part is I only described five tracks. There are many other hidden joys to be discovered for those who decide to take the plunge.
1. The Roadmap In Your head (3:56)
2. Sun Sculptor & The Electrobilities (3:50)
3. The Birth Of Belief (8:38)
4. Coffee For Coltrane (6:58)
5. Isolation In 10 80 (2:55)
6. Mrs. Noonness (4:12)
7. The Old College Sky Is Where We Left It (1:28)
8. Fuel For The Gods (13:05)
9. Early Evening Rain (3:31)
10. Black Squirrel At The Root Of The Staircase (7:34)
11. Outsiders Parachute In (5:48)
12. Déjà Vu (2:25)
13. La Rue Inconnue (4:48)
14. Roadmaps (The Other Way) (5:59)
Added: April 9th 2017
Reviewer: Jon Neudorf
Related Link: Band's Official Site
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