Sound — 9
It's at times like this that I am truly thankful for the existence of YouTube. I stumbled across this wonderful progressive psychedelia while looking up other bands, and didn't hesitate to obtain an album. Erpland/Jurassic Shift is a double-CD affair, meaning that you get your money's worth and then some. The Ozric Tentacles combine funk, psychedelic rock, space rock, and others, in an imaginative fusion dominated by synthesisers and progressive guitar playing, reminiscent of Steve Hillage's work. The bass shines through the blending, swirling music, laying an anchor for some seriously funky vibes. Erpland/Jurassic Shift follows this description closely, using numerous instruments in the course of playing, from electric guitars, to flutes. It is impossible to convey in words the exact feeling of the album; they can change mood suddenly, but there are constant distinct feelings of elation and wonder. Unlike ambient music, which can get dull or repetitive, (for example, see my review of Voyage 34 by Porcupine Tree) the Ozrics dodge vocals, yet still manage to obtain engaging music, which may be due to the progressive edge. The songs, as you might expect from a band influenced by the LSD laden 70s, are very changeable and experimental; tempos and time signatures come and go, yet the band stay tight as a group. Of course, all of this which makes me so delighted, others may deign the compositions the by-product of high hippies. It certainly seems the type of music that some will love, others detest. But it is most definitely worth listening to.
Lyrics — 10
The album is purely instrumental, therefore it is impossible for me to comment on lyrics and/or singing. Some tracks contain vocals, but they're vague mumblings that aren't supposed to be coherent. Ignore this score, and I'll put a true average score at the bottom of the review!
Overall Impression — 9
The Ozric Tentacles gel their melodies together with such ease, I cannot help but be in awe. As I said earlier, they defy being classed as ambient rock, comparable with Porcupine Tree's 'Voyage 34', or Nine Inch Nails' recent 'Ghosts I-IV'. The latter is definitely a step towards knowing what the Ozric Tentacles are like, but their sound remains indescribable until you've experienced it. Every song has its own unique personality, and the album contains no filler tracks. Or, if you're of the 'other' opinion, you'll think it's all filler. Simple as that: You'll love it. Or you'll hate it.