Tuesday, 8 November 2011

Flying Saucer Attack - Flying Saucer Attack

Let's be honest, it's not hard to stick the tag of Space Rock on a band who call themselves Flying Saucer Attack, just take a look at the album cover and tell me I'm wrong. Anyway, this Noise Rock band formed in Bristol in the 90's, forming due to the over hyped and over appreciated britpop of the time. On an initial listen, it sounds very noisy and you hear some great drones of distortion at the level of Sister Ray, only recorded lo-fi in a home. if you're a fan of Spacemen 3, The Jesus & Mary Chain, Slint and My Bloody Valentine.. The chances are high that you'll enjoy and appreciate this band.

Great sounding guitars and clarinet move the band toward the Post-Rock genre, something i have interest in. The percussion is also very good. It's not heavy or in your face, it's very faint and obscure. Label it Avant-Garde if you must, i just like how the levels of distortion and quiet, well recorded drums and vocals all amount up to a loud and energetic album. Something which, if present when recording, wouldn't be the case. The use of feedback is common here, especially on the opening track My Dreaming Hill, which has a very powerful sound, with the clarinet only adding to the drone atmosphere.

The second track, A Silent Tide, reminds me of early The Jesus & Mary Chain. Clear similarities are hears, with a great emphasis on pop like songs over a wall of noise. It's something more bands should take note of, the whole Noise Pop genre is faced in this wall of sound with great dynamics and textures. This album is far from Pop, the third track, Moonset is very droney and the clarinet solo leads the track into an avant-garde atmospshere, with recurring percussion sounding tribal.

Make My Dream puts me in a dream like state, I can imagine them playing this live to an intimate low attendance audience. It makes me think how big My Bloody Valentine became after Loveless, due to the fantastic production, where as, Flying Saucer Attack have the tracks, but not the production. But this is the way they wanted it, so you cant fault them for it. Because of this, I can respect them.

The facade of distortion may start to hurt, or even annoy you after a while, but this is an album that needs to be heard loud, without the volume, the whole album is worthless. You need to be able to hear the vocals, which you can at the right volume. It may begin to become repetitive, like with Spacemen 3, the loud levels of distortion and feedback create an energetic atmopshere. The Drowners is another example of this, the interior sounds remarkable due to the low cost and lo-fi style of recording. The drums are fresh, clarinet, beautiful.. And the vocals, in tune.

Track 9 is astonishing, named Popul Vuh 1, it's a 10 minute Post-Rock piece which sounds like Mogwai mixed with Spacemen 3. I can get used to this noise, it's very samey and repetitive, yet fresh and energetic. it's laid back, but it's in your face in certain areas. It's the key track for me, i would link you, the listener, this track, if i had to choose the strongest. Popul Vuh 2 is an earlier track on the album, which has the same textures, which lasts for 5 minutes, with greater emphasis on high pitched guitar notes and sound scape's.

Loud, was my first reaction after hearing this album. The back end tracks were mellow and laid back which makes me think differently, the first half is all about noise, creating fantastic textures with feedback to make the listener either cringe in fear, or cry in emotion. Now that i've listened several times, I begin to understand what the motives were for this album. Take your time when listening, heavy doses may send you in to a deep sleep.