By CRAIG HAMMONS
There is another dimension beyond which is known to man. It is a dimension as vast as space that lies between sonic sounds and man’s ability to hear. This is a dimension of imagination, improvisation and electrical execution. It is an area we call Acid Mother’s Temple and the Melting Paraiso U.F.O.
Acid Mothers Temple wrapped up 46 shows in 46 days at Alex’s Bar in Long Beach California to a large crowd of devotees of their blend of psychedelic astral space rock. Sort of like if Motorhead and Iron Butterfly had a baby. This is their 16th tour of the United States. Joining them on this tour is the Canadian art rock band Yamantaka / Sonic Titan.
This was going to be an evening to let you senses go and let the music guide you to another place. We were all ready to share this ride when Yamantaka / Sonic Titan took the stage. They are on the road promoting their new album “Dirt”. It is the heaviest album of theirs so far.
Opening with the title track “Dirt” we realized soon that these cats from Canada mean business. Starting off slow then taking off like the speed of sound it was obvious that after 46 straight shows they were polished and showed no signs of slowing down.
After playing “Dark Waters” the core member and originator of the band Angie B welcomed us to the show. Next up was “Beast” off the new album which let singer and bang drum player Angie Loft let her passionate and powerful vocals soar into the cosmos. They stormed right into “Hungry Ghost” which beats us up with the heavy riffs brought on by Brandon Swanson on guitar. At one point he was playing two wah wah pedals at the same time one for each foot.
They are relentlessly creative in their approach with strong hooks, drama and full of spirit. They say they are just a bunch of metalheads and punks but they are much more. Yamantaka / Sonic Titan are full of metal chaos that lets their musical chops shine in the face of passion and power. Ending with the intense song “Out of Time” they kicked out the jams and kicked our ass.
After a brief intermission we were all locked in and ready for blast off. Acid Mothers Temple were going to take us on a musical exploration full of metal chaos and cosmic madness. We were all ready to freak out in Long Beach tonight. Opening with “Black Magic Satori” starting slow and trippy but ends up with guitar guru Makoto Kawabata paralyzing our brains with his intense ripping in fuzztone overdrive. With no time to collect our thoughts they soared into the 25-minute track “Dark Star Blues” which pushed things to the extreme with Makoto ripping into a free form odyssey of twisting chords into experiential shapes of sound. They then slowed things down a bit doing a cover of Angelo Badalamenti’s “Sycamore Trees.”
Next up was one of their trademark songs “Disco Pink Lady Lemonade” which let drummer Satoshima Nani show off his chops by keeping the beat alive and full of fire. The song also let keyboard wizard Higashi Hiroshi weave his celestial sounds into the song that kept the music spacey. My mind was being blown and my face was melting after being right up front and feeling every note saturate my body. This was an alien cleansing of sonic satisfaction. At one point I wonder if I could even keep up but then I just grabbed ahold of the stage, closed my eyes and let the music take me away. I was in an electrical dream of musical ecstasy that I did not want to wake up from.
Finishing off the night with “Cometary Orbital Drive” where the rhythm section keeps a hypnotic repetition going just waiting for the moment when guitarists Jyonson Tsu and Makato go into interstellar over drive before we crash land back at Alex’s Bar. Makato finished by swinging his guitar in the air and left it hanging off the PA system. Feedback filled the room as we all looked at each other like we are all still here safe on planet earth in beautiful Long Beach.
These Japanese free form experimental weirdos left us happy and brain dead but who cares when all we needed was a trip thru space and time.