Followers of today's psychedelic/experimental rock underground have long found rapture and reverence in the total lysergic experience of SubArachnoid Space. Since their inception in 1996 and over the course of seven full-length albums, the San Francisco-based quartet have spun a web of dynamically textured trip-scapes induced almost entirely from total improvisation, drawing a torrent of praise in the process. Live they are a force to be reckoned with, a spontaneous combustion of tremendous power fueled by intense volume and crystalline dissonance. Every one of their recordings display a steady evolution in their unique brand of improvised drone rock, with each one exploring a myriad of different textures. For their eighth album, the band has honed their craft into a finely sharpened prism, a record aimed for your gut as well as your head. Also Rising is the new revelatory oracle, the band's most powerful, focused and simply finest recording to date.
Initially conceived as a band exploring psychedelic terrain from on-the-spot creation, Also Rising stands apart as SubArachnoid Space's most composed record. Much of the band's output charts effects-laden acid-rock/drone via telepathic interplay, but this time SubArachnoid Space hone ideas crafted from the depths of improvisation to a set of razor-sharp songs that stick with your brain receptors, refusing to leave. The result retains all the magic of their full-blown flights of fancy, but with a solid punch that will leave your mind and body reeling. Armed to the cerebellum with effects-drenched twin guitars, bowel-rumbling bass and propulsive, complex drumming, SubArachnoid Space get the acid test rolling with "Harsh Facts of Life"; stun-gun guitars omit phaser-like drones, inducing a propulsive, percussive line that teases the bass into melody, bleeding into a dark stoner-rock groove for the guitars to play lazer-tag over. Also Rising weaves and bobs onward across a dense and varied landscape, alternating between aggressive neuronal meltdowns and chiming, glistening corridors. Ending with the blissful catharsis of "Tigris" (a truncated, fine-tuned version of the side-long opus opposite Bardo Pond on the split LP they shared on Camera Obscura last year), the comedown is a total psychic purge leaving your brain quivering.
Traversing the acid-jam rhythmic grooves of Meddle-era Pink Floyd, the subconscious stirrings of the Cosmic Jokers, and seasoning the sonics with the free-skree guitar aviation of Magnog or Skullflower, Also Rising is a flooring dictum in SubArachnoid Space's mind expansion campaign. May it hotwire your headspace accordingly.