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Spirits Burning & Michael Moorcock: The Hollow lands

It has been a few years since I have heard the American/multinational outfit Spirits Burning, led by musician Don Falcone. I reviewed their 2017 album titled The Roadmap In Your Head, earning an excellent four stars. In 2018 the band released the first of a trilogy titled An Alien Heat, based on the writing of British author Michael Moorcock. We now delve into the second instalment titled The Hollow Lands. This is a conceptual piece, telling the story of a future humanity where decadence takes precedence and a group of the last humans have become immortal. A main part of the plot involves time travel to the Victorian era, you will have to read the lyrics to learn more.

Current and former members of Blue Oyster Cult and Hawkwind and many others all had a hand in bringing The Hollow Lands to life. A total of thirty-one musicians spread over eighteen tracks and seventy-six minutes of music. Let’s just say there is much to digest with this one beginning with “To Hollow Lands”. A sorrowful violin leads into an upbeat folky rock song with excellent lead vocals from Donald Roeser (Blue Oyster Cult). There is a rootsy vibe at work and Roeser’s guitar solo is a highlight. On “Isn’t That Delicious?” a hazy, near psychedelic misty shroud envelopes the soundscape, including the jazzy lead vocals of Dana McCoy. All in all, a nice warm ballad. “Playing At Ships” is an off kilter rootsy rocker given a jazzy touch courtesy of Bridget Wishart’s French horn. The violin and accordion give this one a bit of Cajun spice. I hear a little Hawkwind in the spacier “Dance Through Time” and in the mellow “Warm Snow Peaks” a swishing synthesizer, Albert Bouchard’s minimalist guitar and cool echo effects on the vocals makes for a fine listen. The rocking “On The Hunt” and the trippy “A Haze Of Crimson Light” with its sublime electric guitar and bass, are more excellent tracks.

The Hollow Lands is a cohesive yet varied listen, offering a little something for everyone. I enjoyed it immensely.

A Purple Pyramid Records release.

Track Listing:
1. To Hollow Lands (4:28)
2. Isn’t It Delicious? (4:09)
3. Playing At Ships (4:43)
4. Dance Through Time (5:36)
5. Warm Snow Peaks (2:53)
6. On The Hunt (1:50)
7. A Haze Of Crimson Light (4:01)
8. Conflict & Illusions (5:43)
9. Robot Nurse & The Children Of The Pit (6:11)
10. A Conversation with H.G. Wells (6:04)
11. Awful Dilemma (3:54)
12. Mr. Underwood’s Soliloquy (3:41)
13. Time Machine Cabriolet (3:19)
14. We May Yet Be Saved (2:37)
15. Morphail Megaflow (5:25)
16. Memorable Night At Café Royal (5:25)
17. To The Time Machine, At Last (3:07)
18. Make A Fire (2:58)

Added: September 23rd 2021
Reviewer: Jon Neudorf
Related Link: Artist's Official Site
Hits: 823
Language: english

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