by Dave Segal
on Tue, Jul 26, 2011 at 2:13 PM
Seattle psych-rock group Midday Veil have a habit of getting real gone, recording epic improv jams, and then releasing the most sublime efforts to the public under the rubric Subterranean Ritual. Their second edition of said activity is available for streaming on Midday Veil’s Bandcamp page. You can purchase the cassette there, too. (Official release date is Aug. 1.) The great Mell Dettmer recorded Subterranean Ritual II’s two tracks at Aleph Studios.
The nearly 24-minute “Moon Temple” sounds like Velvet Underground’s “All Tomorrow’s Parties” opiated and etherealized into a wispy mantra of silkiest bliss. About 16 minutes in, things take a turn for the earthy, as the band descends into a Savage Republic-like trudge through red desert sands. Before long, the tempo accelerates, guitars ululate, synths ripple and glisten, drums funkily rumble, and the soundfield gets dense and conflagratory. If you’re not feeling like you’re about to fly by this point, get some new brain cells.
“Naxos” is a seductive 15-minute slither down a nocturnal, minimal-rock alleyway. It’s all about restraint and exquisite sensual tension, radiating a subliminal shimmer on the horizon of your mind’s eye. Quelle spectral!