Abronia - The Whole Of Each Eye - CARDINAL FUZZ 2 LEFT
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Full LP premier via Psychedelic Baby Magazine
Byron Coley had these words to say on Abronia - The Whole Of Each Eye
"Massively ripped sophomore LP by this Portland OR psych sextet. Half of the line-up has shifted in the two years since their great debut album, but the same berserk stack of musical elements remains on the table.
A lot of bands who fly the psych banner these days have a minimalist view of the music, and choose a sort of post-shoegaze lassitude to present their “vision.” This can be astoundingly great, of course, but it also fails to address the central gobble-crazed nature of true psychedelia. Many of history's greatest psych outfits were hewn from bizarre hybrids of disparate parts. Frankenstein monsters in search of sacred ecstasy.
One gets the same vibe off of Abronia. Totally unexpected bits pop up amidst their rhapsodic jamming, conjuring shards of memory as disparate as Relf-era Renaissance, Joseph Byrd's United States of America, and even (at least in spots) real early Siouxsee. These are just a few examples of how wide Abronia cast their net. Their instrumental brunt moves from neo-prog to folk rock to thunderheads cast in the same mold as the Sensational Alex Harvey Band's (I shit you not!).
Taken together, these freakishly disparate elements mange to create a gorgeous and simmering whole. If you aren't tripping to Abronia now, I suggest a change of lifestyle."
Cardinal Fuzz and Feeding Tube Records are proud to bring to you the latest long player from 'Abronia' (Portland USA)
The follow up to their debut, ‘The Whole of Each Eye’ sees Abronia cementing its very singular place in the canon of the broader psych rock universe. A six piece consisting of two guitars, electric bass, tenor saxophone, pedal steel, and one 32” inch bass drum (no drum set here), Abronia pulls from kraut rock, spaghetti Western soundtracks, doom, 60’s UK folk, spiritual jazz, ritualistic drone, and infuse it all with the arid haze of deserts near and far. The sound, with its ample use of lap steel and reverb-heavy electric guitar, is firmly rooted in a sun-baked strain of Americana. But never too far from the surface are elements of European art rock in all of its guises (krautrock, psychedelia, prog) and a welcome wild card in the form of Keelin Mayer, who adds a Stooges-like squall with her saxophone and composed vocal turns à la Nico or former Swans singer Jarboe.
Recorded, as the first album was, at Type Foundry in Portland, but mixed this time by Billy Anderson (known for his work with Sleep, OM, Neurosis, and many other heavy legends), the band builds off of the solid foundation of the first album. There are still hooks and visceral, crushingly satisfying payoffs, but there’s a deeper complexity to these arrangements that rewards careful listeners and searchers.
And while almost half of the last album was entirely instrumental, you’ll find no purely instrumental tracks on this one. This time Keelin’s voice has come to the forefront–a deep and deadly force that brings to mind Nico, Grace Slick, Jarboe, Malaria’s Bettina Köster, and White Magic’s Mira Billotte. Note the dynamics–from the subdued falsetto on the first half of “Cauldron’s Gold” to the murderous scream at the end of “Half Hail.”
Abronia are Keelin Mayer - tenor sax and vocals
Eric Crespo - guitar and backing vocals
Paul Schaefer - guitar
Rick Pedrosa - pedal steel
Shaun Lyvers - bass
Shaver - the big drum/percussion/melodica
"Obsidian Visions/Shadowed Lands blows in like a desert wind, complete with bruising skies and flashes of lightning. Tinges of psychedelia lurk at its edges, out in the shadow of the buttes, where hippy hermits still cling to their faded photographs of Grace Slick and Janis Joplin."
–ECHOES AND DUST
"To say I enjoyed 'Obsidian Visions/Shadowed Lands' is an understatement....it is a magical album that defies categorisation and pigeon-holing, one that is based on spirituality and mysticism. At the beginning I mentioned that the aim was transcendence and I think they've achieved it...this album transcends..it transcends what we believe music to be - it takes music beyond 'nice sounds' and 'pretty melodies' and into a whole different sphere. This is music that can take you away into landscapes undiscovered..."
-DAYZ OF PURPLE AND ORANGE
".Abronia affect a meditative attitude, and concentrate on an exploratory feel within their tracks...there’s no question they establish themselves here as a cohesive unit of songwriters with a definite story to tell through their work."
"The sound, with its ample use of lap steel and reverb-heavy electric guitar, is firmly rooted in a sun-baked strain of Americana. But never too far from the surface are elements of European art rock in all of its guises (krautrock, psychedelia, prog) and a welcome wild card in the form of Keelin Mayer, who adds a Stooges-like squall with her saxophone and composed vocal turns à la Nico or former Swans singer Jarboe."
"...This was the first time I heard of Abronia, but wow, this is amazing stuff...Abronia is a six piece band from Portland, Oregon consisting of two guitars, pedal steel, tenor saxophone, bass, and a 32” marching band drum with floor tom legs on it and it is clear they know how to use these instruments. Sparsely using vocals (but at the perfect time) and mixing the saxophone in makes this an amazing psychedelic listen."
"On Abronia's debut album, Obsidian Visions/Shadowed Lands, the lack of a proper kit doesn't seem to hold the band back in any way—if anything, the thudding percussion anchors the music to its primitive inspirations. Sprawling instrumental intro "The Great Divide" showcases the group's nimble ability to mix spaghetti-Western soundtrack music with Syd Barrett-era Pink Floyd psychedelia."
"Anyone who’s caught Portland six-piece Abronia in a live setting can attest to the mysticism prevalent in the band’s tribal oeuvre....the group harnesses ethereal psych flourishes and fluid atmospherics into their musical sensibilities, offering a potent aural wormhole that often leads to trippy results."
“Album opener “The Great Divide” opens the gates with fume and fury, pure free fireball skronk jazz, like Sun Ra‘s Arkestra gathering in the Sahara, summoning the djinn, the lightning, sandstorms, and howling winds, with furious blats of what sounds like tenor sax."