Bhagiti - "The Rise And Fall Of Bhagiti"
(IMCR Records 2003, imcr archival #001)
Uploaded to Aural Innovations: October 2003
Bhagiti was the moniker used by improviser Eric Wallack for his solo 4-track recordings many years ago. This collection includes music recorded between 1985-1990 and the tracks were chosen from 20 of approximately 50 cassettes Eric recorded as Bhagiti. Listening to the 21 tracks on this compilation it's clear that Eric would have fit quite comfortably with the whole DIY homemade cassette networking scene of the 1980's. Those of you who have heard Eric's music from the past couple years already know what a unique talent he is, and I'm confident that anyone following the reviews and interview this issue are finding their curiosity aroused. Though lightyears away from what Eric is doing these days, The Rise And Fall Of Bhagiti is important because it helps paint the larger picture to include Eric's earliest recording years, and illustrates even further how varied his musical and stylistic interests are.
But there's a load of fun music here, much of it rockin and even downright freaky. Among the highlights is the dark, spacey, psychedelic, and intense "The Insistance Of Klee", with its simple but passionate acoustic guitar passages combined with droning and lulling keyboard and noise lines and haunting voices. Eric gets into cool acidic freak rock on tracks like "The Earth Is Hollow And I Have Touched The Sky" and "Peter Paul Misses All". "Not Nutty You" is a funky jamming psych rock tune with an early 70's feel. "Curiosity's Cat" is a rocker that would be right at home on Bowie's Ziggy Stardust album. I love the combination of jamming guitar runs, rumbling acid guitar, and alien electronics on "Insects And Peppermints". "BirdBrain" is full of trippy Iggy freak-pop angst. "Let Your Face Fall" is a potent prog-punky rocker. I got a real kick out of "Bhagiti Pepper's Lonely Hearts CluB Band", which despite the obvious humor is a kick ass rocker. "Desert Song" has a kind of a rollicking country-folk Van Morrison "Wild Night" trip vibe. And the "The closing track, "Acorn Majesty", is similar, but though highly rockin it has elements of both Thin Lizzy and Yes. I'm confusing you with these analogies aren't I? Welcome to Bhagiti...
For more information you can visit the Eric Wallack web site at:
Contact via snail mail c/o Eric Wallack; 445 North Main St; Bowling Green, OH 43402.
Reviewed by Jerry Kranitz