Tuesday, April 2, 2019

Album Review: The Claypool Lennon Delirium - South of Reality

The Claypool Lennon Delirium
South of Reality 
**** out of *****

On the debut record from The Claypool Lennon Delirium the duo locked in and crafted some exciting space rock as their different styles slowly formed a fully functioning record. Their follow-up is more of the same weirdness as the duo push and pull each other into the unknown.

The album is book ended with tunes whose lyrical focuses are one the destruction of our planet while the musical sound is rooted in galaxies far away. Opening with "Little Fishes" the track actually reminds of another Claypool project, Oysterhead as chimes and rumblings mix over Claypool's lyrics about mercury poisoning our soft minds. Closer "Like Fleas" puts a different spin on things treating humanity as fleas on the back of the dog of Mother Earth; she will just shake us off when we become too annoying.

The briefly titled "Blood and Rockets: Movement I/Saga of Jack Parsons/Movement II/Too the Moon" focuses more on Sean Lennon's outer space fuzz floating style with his melodic vocals narrating what could be an episode of "Tripped Out History" before descending to the more earth bound rumblings of Claypool's bass on the title track. 

The two main members of the outfit have always had their own distinct style and the album moves from one to the other but these collaborators work best when the styles meld on a single effort. The gorgeous "Amethyst Realm" may be the best of the bunch as Lennon's sonic warbling and Claypools stout bass work meld into hypnotic flowing rhythms. "Boriska" also hits high notes while Lennon sings a lot like his father telling the tale of a Russian boy born on Mars while the bass gorgeously moves the proceedings before a cinematic finale complete with layers of strings.

Quirky oddballs clearly inspire this duo (Jack Parsons, Boriska) but when Claypool resorts to his old man/get off my lawn ways on "Easily Charmed By Fools", the dull "Toady Man's Hour" or the rambling side effects warning which closes out "Cricket Chronicles Revisited: Pt. 1, Ask Your Doctor/Pt. 2, Psyde Effects", the results aren't as charming.

Both artists have their own careers but the follow up to Monolith of Phobos, South of Reality solidifies the duo as a band that needs to be watched/listened/freaked out to no matter where they travel as the sum is more than the individual parts for the majority of the record. Here is hoping more cosmic journeys are on the horizon from the searching pair of musicians.     
Support the band, buy the record, peep some video below:

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