BAND OF THE WEEK: FLAMINGODS

11 Jun

You’ll have to excuse us – or at least ignore us – if we’re guilty of hyperbole when it comes to “Hyperborea,” the full-length album from London’s Flamingods.

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You see, we’ve been listening to “Hyperborea” since sometime after its release this past summer, and we’re about ready to declare it one of the best albums we’ve ever heard. In fact, we’re ready. Here goes: “Hyperborea” is one of the best albums we’ve ever heard.

And while we’d like to say, “let us explain why” … how in the world could we possibly explain why? Just listen.

Meet us by the drum(s) for an album equal parts party and profound. Strange, heavy, fast, slow, mellow, manic, memorable – “Hyperborea” can check off any criteria your ears may require, regardless of fashion, season or circumstance. Its sound is timeless and formless, leaping forward and backward in time, intensely vast in scope, the irresistible antidote to smile suppression.

Ordinary playground sounds turn hypnotic on “Garden of Indra” while “Morning Raga” coolly crashes the shore like music from an unimagined Jack Kirby comic about the life of Ravi Shankar. On its title track, “Hyperborea” achieves previously unimaginable levels of brilliance, sounding ultimately effortless and radical, always finding spaciousness in confined spaces.

In a previous lifetime, there would probably be some temptation to call Flamingods “world music.” And while something about that term feels both too general (what music isn’t “world music”?) and too limiting for “Hyperborea,” the great success of this album would seem to lie in the glory of its gargantuan, global racket. It’s one of the best albums we’ve ever heard and we can hardly wait to hear what they create next.

“Hyperborea” is available at the Flamingods Bandcamp page – vinyl is available at the Shape Records Bandcamp page. You should check it out.

“We can find it in books. We can find it in the sutras. We can find it by asking. And, most important, we can find it simply by looking into ourselves. Why do we practice? What is it that we seek? What is it that we want? What is it that we are prepared to do to get what we want? Are we willing to practice the edge, take a risk, unreservedly throw ourselves into practice? Or are we just being opportunistic and calculating, ready only to skim a little cream off the top to take care of the immediate problems, but not ready to go to the depths?” – John Daido Loori, “Invoking Reality

 

 

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