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Quintessence: Cosmic Surfer

I was not familiar with the original Quintessence, the late 60s psychedelic-progressive rock band that recorded five albums before breaking up in 1972. Former lead singer Shiva Jones has recorded a new CD under the name Shiva's Quintessence. Cosmic Surfer continues the original bands quest for spirituality with art-rock song writing relying heavily on chant and Indian influences. Much of the music is continuous loops of synthetic drums and keyboard riffs, programmed by Rudra Beauvert, overlain with vocal melodies and counter melodies.

The songs on Cosmic Surfer are entertaining in nature, but to be honest, there really isn't anything that stands out as special or worth special attention. "Reptilian Corporate Sign Language" is supposed to be a poke at modern day greed, but it's beat and vocals sound just like "Dolphin Dreaming ", "Didgeridoo Medicine Man", and way too many other songs. The mix of spoken and sung passages, like in "But What Am I?" and "Blue Is Beautiful", is entertaining the first time you hear it, but kind of weakens the song on repeat listens.

By the middle of the CD you have had enough of drum programming and lyrics that repeat themselves, but if you make it to the end, "Hollywood Guru" is probably the best song on the first CD. That's right, first. If one CD wasn't repetitive enough, this release also includes a second CD, containing reworked recordings of original Quintessence tracks. Let me state for the record that rework means "to make sound just like the songs on Disk One".

Overall, you must admit that the songs contained on Cosmic Surfer are passionately written and performed. But whatever magic may exist on this recording, is watered down by repetitiveness. An average release.

Track Listing
Disk One
1. Reptilian Corporate Sign Language
2. But What Am I?
3. Dolphin Dreaming
4. Blue Is Beautiful
5. Didgeridoo Medicine Man
6. Everything Is Weird
7. Blame
8. New Age Breadhead
9. Hollywood Guru
Disk Two
1. Giants Annunaki/White Powder Gold
2. Cosmic Surfer
3. Ganga Mai
4. Oasis
5. Sun
6. Hail Mary Divine Mother Chant
7. Hallelujad
8. Sri Ram Chant
9. Om Mane Padme Hum

Added: January 13th 2006
Reviewer: Steve Ambrosius
Related Link: Eclectic Discs
Hits: 2929
Language: english

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